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Derek Underwood: 1945-2024 | Kent Cricket



Derek Underwood: 1945-2024 | Kent Cricket

Kent Cricket is in mourning following the loss of life of one of many icons of the Membership, Derek Underwood, on the age of 78.

A staunch one-club man, Derek Leslie Underwood was born in Bromley, Kent, on 8 June 1945. In 1963, he made his first-team debut aged 17 in opposition to Yorkshire – ending his first innings as a first-class cricketer with figures of 4-40. He went on to develop into the youngest bowler to take 100 wickets in his preliminary season.

He was awarded Kent Males’s Cap quantity 141 in 1964 on the again of his achievements in his debut 12 months and was named the Cricket Writers’ Membership Younger Cricketer of the Yr in 1966.

Derek would go on to make over 900 appearances for Kent throughout three many years, from 1963-1987, taking a exceptional 2,523 wickets at a median of simply 19.04.

He captured his 1,000th first-class wicket aged simply 25, and took 100 wickets in a season 10 occasions, notably 157 in 1966. He was the main bowler in England on 4 events: 1966, 1967, 1978 and 1979.

In response to Wisden, no nickname was higher earned than the “Lethal” which Derek’s Kent teammates conferred on him for the havoc he brought about on rain-affected pitches. Such was his accuracy and, for a left-arm spinner, tempo – both aspect of medium when the ball was actually biting – that when situations favoured him, an avalanche of wickets was virtually assured for Kent.

Derek made 86 Take a look at appearances for his nation after making his debut in opposition to the West Indies at Trent Bridge in July 1966, taking 297 wickets for England at a median of 25.83. He’s England’s sixth-highest wicket-taker in Take a look at cricket and continues to be the main spinner within the listing.

In One-Day Worldwide cricket, the left-armer made 26 appearances throughout the emergence of shorter codecs of the sport, taking 32 wickets at 22.93.

His wizardry introduced England some of the dramatic wins within the historical past of Checks when, with six minutes left in opposition to Australia in The Oval Ashes Take a look at of 1968, he took his fourth wicket in 27 balls. It clinched a 226-run win which squared the sequence, despite the fact that a lunchtime cloudburst which flooded the bottom had swallowed all however 75 minutes of the final 4 hours. Following on from his stellar appearances within the Take a look at area that 12 months, he was named a Wisden Cricketer of the Yr for 1969.

In response to the retrospective ICC Males’s Take a look at Bowler rankings, Derek Underwood was ranked Quantity One on the planet from September 1969 to August 1973.

At Hastings in 1973, Underwood demolished Sussex by taking 8 for 9 after a bare-footed Kent workforce helped the Fireplace Brigade mop up one other flooded floor. Underwood’s accuracy, intelligence and persistence meant he was at all times a blessing to his captains.

He acquired two profit seasons at Kent Cricket for his excellent service to the Membership, in 1975 and 1986 respectively, and was awarded an MBE for companies to cricket within the New Yr’s Honours listing of 1981.

Derek retired from the sport in 1987, having gained three County Championships, two One-Day Cups, three Nationwide Leagues and three Benson & Hedges Cups as a Kent cricketer.

He was named President of Marylebone Cricket Membership (MCC) in 2008, after serving as Kent Cricket’s Membership President in 2006, and was inducted into the ICC’s Cricket Corridor of Fame in 2009.

In 2011, the Annexe Stand at The Spitfire Floor St Lawrence was renamed the ‘Underwood & Knott Stand’ in recognition of his exploits for the county and highlighting the impressed partnership that he loved for each Kent and England with one other icon of the Membership, Alan Knott.

Kent Cricket’s Chair, Simon Philip, mentioned: “The Kent Cricket household is in mourning following the passing of one among its biggest ever gamers.

“Derek was an impressive contributor to each Kent and England, profitable trophies for Membership and nation and etching his identify within the historical past books forevermore.

“Watching Derek weave his distinctive magic on a moist wicket was a privilege for all who had been capable of witness it. His induction into the ICC Corridor of Fame exhibits the esteem through which he was held in world cricket.

“An advocate for rising our recreation worldwide while defending our sport’s wealthy heritage, Derek additionally made substantial contributions off the sphere in addition to on it, and he will probably be sorely missed by everybody at Kent Cricket.”

The ideas of everybody at Kent Cricket are with Derek’s family and friends at this unhappy time.

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