Wayne White: a player of unfulfilled potential

Wayne White: a player of unfulfilled potential

As Wayne White announces he is leaving Leicestershire for the second time in his career, Deep Extra Cover's Huw Lloyd talks about why he is sad to see the all-rounder go.

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Photo © Luke Adams

I am a self-confessed cricket geek, I daydream and create cricket teams in my head; teams made up by players with something in common. The best XI to never play for England, best XI to only play once for England are two I regularly compose. Did you know no wicketkeeper has only played once for England?

Another I often do is “players who have not fulfilled their potential” and today saw one name, that can arguably be included in that team, hit the news. Wayne White has left Leicestershire for the second time in his career.

Just before 1pm today Leicestershire County Cricket Club announced that White had left the club, by mutual consent, to pursue other opportunities. I truly hope the other opportunities they mention are within cricket, because for White to leave cricket at the age of 30 with the talent he still possesses would be a great loss to the county game.

White started his career at Derbyshire in 2005, before being released at the end of the 2008 season and being picked up by Leicestershire for his first stay at Grace Road; a stay that saw him lift the T20 cup, famously bowling just 1 over and taking the wicket where Paul Nixon took ”that catch” in his last game for the club.

White played the next season for the club before moving to Lancashire, a move which should have been ideal for the all-rounder but that never quite paid off and saw him return to Derbyshire in 2015. He then move onto Leicestershire again until the announcement at 12.50pm today.

The number of clubs that have been willing to sign White shows what a player of great potential he is, and that a number of coaches have seen the same thing in him. He’s a player who can bat and score big and quick runs, and a player who can bowl economically and take wickets too.

The statement from the club said, “Wayne proved himself to be a very talented player indeed and a big favourite of the club’s supporters.”

This has been the case wherever White has plied his trade, with the fans taking him to their hearts. It’s often the way with players who have massive potential, but are inconsistent; capable of match winning performances, but not capable of putting those performances on week in and week out.

Had White been able to add this level of consistency to his career, he may have settled at one club and been able to show everyone what clearly many people have seen in him throughout his career.

If the opportunities the club talk about are not playing county cricket, I for one will be very sad to not see him on the county scene again, as will the supporters of the clubs he has played for I’m sure.

Leicestershire added in their statement that they, too, were sad to see him leave the club and wished him all the best for the future. I do as well and hope to see him playing county cricket again, maybe working his way out of my eleven county cricketers who have not fulfilled their potential.

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