British seamer more than useful
Englishman Jack White took seven wickets for Wanderers in a Nelson club innings three weeks ago.
He has done better though. In June this year he took eight wickets bowling for his Kendal Cricket Club team against Chorley in England's Northern Premier League.
As it happened, the 20-year-old Cumbrian's remarkable figures of eight for 15 off his 15 overs, including six maidens, equalled a club record and established a personal benchmark for the young seamer.
But he is proving himself to be a useful part of Wanderers' seam attack since arriving in Nelson to join the Brightwater-based Wanderers club for the summer.
His 18-wicket haul prior to round four of the Nelson two-day competition had him leading the Sid Guppy Cup club bowling competition until WTTU seamer Jon Routhan's superb 10-wicket haul against Stoke-Nayland last Saturday knocked the Englishman off his perch.
White hopes it will only be a temporary displacement. He has now taken 19 wickets, five behind Routhan, but still has the rest of the Nelson summer to try to improve his statistics.
He has family ties here. His aunt his lived in Upper Moutere for the past 10 years, which encouraged him to head abroad.
Wanderers are now benefiting from his still youthful talents, which also extend to the batting crease.
"I do consider myself [to be] an all-rounder, but much more a bowling all-rounder," he said.
"I opened the batting for Kendal, maybe two seasons ago. I did alright, then went back down [the order] and this year started a bit lower then came back at the end of the year and opened the rest of it. I do quite like it, but it's a bit hard coming in and out of opening. It's hard to be consistent."
He said the standard of Nelson club cricket was similar to what he has been used to in England.
"I didn't really know what to expect, but it's a good standard here. I think the only difference is you don't have the pros, which makes a big difference.
"Every team has a pro back home and that definitely raises the standard," noting that former New Zealand test batsmen Jamie How and Lou Vincent have both played for Kendal.
"Jamie was a great guy, he was good for the club. He was just a different level to everyone else in that league.
"Lou Vincent, he's a character. We all loved him, he was a great character, a good laugh . . . just crazy."
However, the conditions here have meant some tinkering with his bowling process.
"My main strength is just keeping it on a good line [but] length over here is a bit different to back home.
"What works back home doesn't work here. Back home I'll just bowl full and straight and if that doesn't work, I'll just change it.
"Usually that'll work, because the pitches are much slower and [the ball] doesn't come on as quick. It comes on a lot quicker here. Back home you don't get driven as much whereas here, if I bowled the same thing, I think I'd get driven a lot more.
"The outfields [are] a bit quicker [here] as well.
"It's a bit hard being a bowler over here, actually," he joked.
- © Fairfax NZ News