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Full name Damian Mills
Born July 15, 1979
Died November 17, 2003, Winnipeg, Manitoba (aged 24 years 125 days)
Major teams Canada
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Right-arm medium-fast
|List A span||1999-2001|
Damian's love for cricket started in 1985 when he was visiting England on a family vacation and saw his first cricket match. Before the family returned from their vacation Damian was presented with a size-2 junior bat by his Dad, Dr. Barry Mills. Dr. Mills did as much as he could to keep and encourage Damian's interest in cricket. That encouragement and support from his Mom, Dad and Sisters continued throughout Damian's life. Damian started to play organized cricket in 1986 at Lincoln Elementary School where he met and formed a close relationship with his current coach Ron Dipchand. In 1989 Damian joined the Manitoba Cricket Association Junior League as a member of the MCA II team.
In 1992, days before before his 13th birthday, Damian was a member of The Manitoba Junior Provincial Team and for the first time he tried out for The Canadian National Youth Team. At this time Canada was still participating in the International Youth Tournament. Damian was amongst the youngest athletes at the trials did not make the team but the experience was invaluable. Also, in 1992 Damian made his first appearance in the MCA Senior League. He was a member of the Winnipeg Juniors Cricket Club; he played only two games that year.
Damian became a regular member of the WJCC in 1993 when his main role was as a bowler. Due to injuries he was forced to give up bowling and began to concentrate on his batting. It is with his performance with the bat that Damian made his mark in cricket. In 1994 Damian was invited by the MCA to the MCA Senior Training Camp. The camp takes place during the winter months. In 1995 Damian first represented Manitoba on the Senior Provincial Team in the Western Provincial Championship. Damian's highlight from this competition was opening the batting against British Columbia and scoring 42 runs. Returning from this competition at 16 years old he scored his first century in the MCA League, 111 runs, not out against East Kildonan C.C. Damian has been an integral member of the Manitoba Senior Provincial Team ever since.
In 1996 Manitoba and Alberta started the Annual Western Canada U25 Championship, later to be joined by British Columbia. Damian has since played in every tournament, eight in total. He often tallied up the most runs scored by an individual in this tournament. During this time Damian became a batting force to be reckoned with in Manitoba.
In 1997 Damian scored the most runs in the Manitoba Senior League, he repeated this performance five more times in 1998, 1999, 2001, 2002 and in his final season, 2003.
Damian played for Canada for the first time in 1997 in the final International Youth Tournament in Bermuda. He again represented Canada in 1998 at The NorTel West Indies Youth Tournament in Trinidad and Tobago.
In 1999 Damian was selected to two Canadian Teams, Canada Under-23 and The Canadian National Senior Team. In October of 1999 Damian played for Canada in the West Indies Cricket Board's Red Stripe Bowl in Antigua. He went on to play in the 2000 Red Stripe bowl in 2000. Also in 2000 Damian was selected by an English Cricket Club for a tour to India.
Damian continued to train hard at cricket with the intention of making the Canadian National Team again. He spent one winter playing in New Zealand and this year (2003) he traveled to Toronto on several weekends to play in the Toronto and District Cricket League.
He died in his sleep at the age of 24.
Thanks: Manitoba Cricket Assocation
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