DateLine: 19th October 2005
With an ability to take large numbers of wickets with movement, rather than blistering pace, and an inability to be selected for England, Kevin Dean can be said to suffer from ĎMartin Bicknell Syndromeí. Deanís lack of express pace almost certainly counted against him when discussed by the England selectors, even in an era before Harmison & Co. Ironically though, when he came closest to international selection (playing for a de facto England 2nd XI in MCC colours against the Sri Lankan tourists in 2002) he took the new ball ahead of Simon Jones. Deanís chances of being picked as a medium fast left arm swing bowler may have been hampered by Mike Smithís lack of success in his solitary Test in 1997, though the fact that he had 170 wickets at 22 before his 25th birthday without being selected for an A Tour barely seemed credible then or now. With Dean now into his 30ís, and with 2 injury plagued seasons behind him (including a dislocated left elbow after his golf cart overturned on Derbyshireís annual golf day) his career is at a crossroads, although as out and out pace has never been a feature of Deanís game he should still be able to take wickets once his rhythm returns, even if injury and age have nipped at his speed. As a left arm bowler can be as graceful and enjoyable to watch as a left handed batsman, it would be a tremendous shame if Deanís career was to fizzle out at such a relatively early age.
(Article: Copyright © 2005 Matthew Reed)