Tom making his mark in Suffolk side

May 5, 2023

AFTER an ‘awesome experience’ Down Under in the winter, Tom Harper is targeting a successful summer with club and county.

The 18-year-old former Woodbridge School student rubbed shoulders with some of the biggest names in world cricket while in Australia at the Darren Lehmann Cricket Academy.

Tom, who met Indian superstar Virat Kholi, is now aiming to put those experiences to good effect, and has already started to make his mark in Suffolk’s T20 side.

After impressing in the pre-season friendly at home to Bedfordshire, when he returned figures of 4-2-5-2 in the second match, Tom was selected for Suffolk’s second Group 3 fixture versus Lincolnshire.

Suffolk lost the opening match at Woodhall Spa by six wickets, but Tom top-scored with 28 off 25 balls, striking the only six of Suffolk’s innings.

All-rounder Tom, who made his Suffolk debut away to Norfolk in last season’s T20 competition, said: “My goal is to contribute to the team wherever possible.

“I would love to play for Suffolk across all three formats, and also have a good season for Copdock & OIs in the EAPL.”

Tom, who lives at Badingham, started his career at Easton, before switching to Copdock & OIs five years ago.

He spent the winter in Australia, with some of the world’s leading players converging on Adelaide, where he was based for the T20 World Cup.

Tom said: “It was pretty incredible for the first two months as it coincided with the T20 World Cup while we were there, so we had the opportunity to do some net bowling with the teams.”

He found himself bowling at England duo Harry Brook and Sam Curran, India’s Ravi Ashwin and Dinesh Karthik and New Zealand pair Kane Williamson and Jimmy Neesham.

He also had the opportunity to have a centre wicket practice bowling alongside Australia’s Ashton Agar at his fellow countrymen all-rounder Cameron Green and opening bowler Mitchell Starc.

Tom, who will be off to Loughborough University in September to do an International Business degree, continued: “What I learnt from them in terms of the tactical side of the game, especially bowling in T20 cricket, was fantastic.

“Stuff like knowing when a batter is going to come at you and try to hit you everywhere, so that you try to limit their boundary options, and also trying to bowl dot balls.

“To be netting alongside international players from around the world was just an awesome experience.”

Although he didn’t get to bowl at Kohli, Tom had the opportunity to speak to him and even had his photograph taken with the batter who is arguably the most famous current cricketer in the world.

Tom, who towered over Kohli, added: “I got chatting with him and we were just laughing and joking like he was a normal guy.”


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