By Ronan Alexander | Twitter: @ronan_45
A strawberry-blonde haired destructive right-handed batsman and seam bowler that can make things happen. No, not him.
19-year-old Joey Evison is a name to keep an eye out for over the next few years on the county circuit. Currently boasting the joint fastest half century in Under-19 cricket, from only 18 deliveries. He’s not in bad company either, as the other batsman to achieve that feat is Indian superstar Rishabh Pant.
Evison first broke onto the scene as a 15-year-old when he scored a century for Notts Academy in the Nottinghamshire Premier League in 2017. By the end of that season he made his debut for Notts 2nd XI against Worcestershire where he scored 54 as he batted number 5 in the second innings of the drawn match.
The youngster earned himself more regular appearances for the Trent Bridge 2’s over the next two seasons which helped gain a call up to the England Under 19 setup. He played his part in the u19 World Cup last year, scoring one half century with a tournament strike rate of 90.25 and his bowling came at a decent rate too, going at only 5.58 runs per over. Evison did reasonably well in the competition without standing out, although it was ultimately a disappointing campaign for the Three Lions which saw them fail to get out of the group stage behind New Zealand and West Indies.
The all-rounder continued his rise by becoming the first player born after 2000 to make his First-Class debut for Nottinghamshire as he featured against Warwickshire at the end of the 2019 season, hitting 45 in his first knock. Since then, he’s got himself in the squad for the Bob Willis Trophy and continued to impress.
Style of play
A right-handed middle order batsman who also bowls right arm medium-fast. As a batsman, he predominantly bats at number six, although currently operating at number 9 for Notts. From watching him play in both the Bob Willis Trophy and Under 19 World Cup, his go-to attacking shot sees him get on the front foot, with his back leg on the ground which allows him to open his arms and strike the ball with power from anywhere between cover to mid-wicket. He can be particularly destructive over extra cover using this technique against both seam and spin as shown below.
As well as being strong in the v in front of the wicket, Evison is also comfortable with the ball on his legs. His first boundary in first-class cricket came courtesy of a leg-side flick off the bowling of Jeetan Patel. The flicks and glances he plays off both his legs and hips are another string to his bow and is strong in that area off both pace and spin bowling.
With the ball, he is comfortable operating both over and round the wicket aiming to get the ball to shape into the batsman as shown by his wicket of Billy Godleman earlier this month. Also, in the pre-season friendly against Warwickshire, he claimed a wicket with his first ball, dipping into left-hander Rob Yates. That wicket also pinpoints the skill he can create by getting the ball to dip into the batsman. Impresses pitching the ball up and an article on trentbridge.co.uk from 2019 when he was called up to the England Young Lions squad highlights his skill of bowling at the death.
https://live.nvplay.com/ecb/#m2156e565-8a58-4952-b7c9-43becc0ce306 (See down the left to watch the video of his wicket)
Having missed Notts last two matches against Yorkshire and Lancashire due to a foot injury, Evison’s short term goals will be to simply get back into the side and become a regular for the remainder of the 2020 Bob Willis Trophy. (Which he missed through injury). Peter Moores men have struggled over the past two years but Evison is a rare bright light at the end of the Notts tunnel. With the 18-year-old currently batting number 9 for the Trent Bridge side, he will be looking to add to his solid start with the bat. Having scored 45 and 38 already, he will aspire climbing the batting order into the number 6 slot.
He is yet to make his debut for a strong Notts Outlaws side but has featured in the Second XI T20 over the past two years. His numbers did not exactly stand out in that competition as he was striking at only 91.6 across his eight knocks and was used sparingly with the ball. Evison will be hoping his four-day form this summer will earn him a shot in the limited overs side next year.
Continuing to develop with England Under 19’s will also be important as the team look to improve on their poor World Cup showing which saw them get knocked out in the group stages. But kicking on with his county could eventually lead to potential England Lions recognition although he still has a lot of work to do to reach that stage. He has already represented England Young Lions in 2019.
From his interviews he comes across as a level-headed good competitor with the right attitude. Some social media comments from Notts fans describe him as an old-head on young shoulders which can only stand him in good stead for the future.