Record-breaking bowler Tom Wilson is on cloud nine - after taking remarkable figures of 9-15 for Rotherham Phoenix last weekend.
The 24-year-old paceman achieved the feat in his side’s 142-run over Frecheville Community in the fourth division of the South Yorkshire League last weekend.
Batting first, Wilson watched on as Phoenix posted 183-2, with skipper Daniel Crofts hitting 81 not out and Junaid Mir adding an unbeaten 64.
Then in Frecheville’s reply, Wilson bowled opener Daniel Froggatt without a run on the board - and went on to claim a further eight wickets, with five victims clean bowled.
“From ball one I knew I was in with a shot of getting a few wickets, as the ball was swinging more than I have ever seen,” Wilson, a teacher, said.
“As an opening bowler you always want to strike early, and I was able to do just that in the first over, which gave me a real confidence boost to push on.”
On a day when he could seemingly do no wrong, the only blot on Wilson’s copybook was a dropped catch - off his own bowling - when on a hat-trick.
The bowler, who took a hat-trick in midweek cricket for Shiregreen CC earlier in the season, laughed: “The missed hat-trick chance is something I won’t forget any time soon!
“It was probably the worse ball of the day, it was just hit back at me. I threw myself towards the ball in the hope I could get something on it, which I did, but it just popped out.
“I was gutted, of course, but what followed it has gone some way to make up for it.”
Wilson was robbed of the chance to take all ten wickets, however, when Rehan Mir bowled Tom Hayes for a duck to leave Frecheville 24-8.
“After I got my seventh wicket, there was talk that all ten were there for the taking,” he said.
“I was not getting ahead of myself, but I really thought that I would have got them all.”
The display capped the best season in Wilson’s career, and he ended up with 51 wickets in all competitions.
“This is a new side for me and they have given me the chance to play the best cricket of my life.
“As a team we have had some really quality performances, but we just have not been consistent enough. Hopefully that will change next season and we can get promoted.”
Phoenix skipper Crofts added: “It was a dream day for the team.
“It was nice to get some runs and have a good partnership with Junaid, but Tom’s spell was the best I have seen, and probably will see for a long time.
It was a good performance to end a challenging season, and we will be looking to celebrate results like this on a more frequent basis next season.”
Phoenix chairman Richard Tong confirmed the figures were a club record, beating 9-30 taken by the late Terry Harper in a Sheffield League match in the early 1980s.
“I remember it well as I took the other wicket,” he laughed-.
“And believe it or not, he took the catch!”
n South Yorkshire League round-up: Page 13.