Jamie Porter, England cricketer. Let that sink in for a moment. England cricketer, it doesn’t get any better than this.
Jamie joined Chingford CC before the start of 2014, fairly disenchanted with where his cricket career was heading and on the point of abandoning cricket and joining the world of work. During that 2014 season, Porter, with his wicket taking capabilities, was largely instrumental in my club winning the Essex Premier League cricket title for the first time in it’s history.
That year, Essex County Cricket Club came calling. Jamie played a few 2nd XI matches and impressed with more wickets in front of some very good judges. Before the season end, Jamie was celebrating the Chingford success with being called up to the Essex first team for the first time.
And as they say, the rest is history. Essex, under the superb stewardship of coach Chris Silverwood and captain Ryan Ten Doeschate, helped nurture Jamie Porter into a potential England star. Essex won the County Championship Division Two title in 2016 with some style, with Porter a major contributor.
Then the spotlight of Division One cricket in 2017. Playing against great cricketers in the County Championship was something the Essex players looked forward to with relish. But some, including your correspondent, thought that Essex would be lucky to survive in the Division.
Not only did they survive, but the County club won the County Championship title for the first time in 25 years in magnificent, rip roaring style and played confident, winning cricket with a happy team spirit. Porter came of age in 2017. He took 75 wickets, against the cream of English and international batting, and all of a sudden, with an Ashes tour beckoning, Jamie was being talked of as an England candidate.
To some people’s surprise, including mine, Porter didn’t make into the tour party, some others being chosen that perhaps didn’t have the credentials that Jamie has. What more did he have to do to convince the England selectors?
What are Jamie Porter’s main attributes as an opening bowler? First, he is accurate, as is defined by the number of lbw decisions and bowled that he gets. Also, he bowls at a lively pace and wants a wicket with almost every ball he bowls. Plus add to that a very hard working and professional outlook, and you have a England bowler. Jamie gets top batsmen out, period.
So, I was flicking through the cricket headlines today when I saw this news. It’s an amazing story of hard work and dedication that in the end, pays off. I’m sure Jamie, when given the chance to shine, will not let anyone down. So pleased for him, and I look forward to seeing his name up in lights for England. Well deserved!!