Full name Benjamin Ward Gannon
Born September 5, 1975, Oxford
Current age 43 years 70 days
Major teams Gloucestershire
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Right-arm medium-fast
|Last First-class||Kent v Middlesex at Canterbury, May 14-17, 2003 scorecard|
|List A debut||1999|
|Last List A||Middlesex v Hampshire at Lord's, Sep 14, 2003 scorecard|
Injury could not have come at a worse time for Ben Gannon. With Gloucestershire missing Mike Smith and Jon Lewis for most of the 2001 season, this would have been the perfect chance for the Oxford-born paceman dramatically to enhance his reputation. In the final statistics, Gannon only played five Championship games, returning a disappointing eight wickets at close to 50. The matches were consecutive in the middle of the season, before he slipped out of the spotlight.
When fit, Gannon is a tough prospect. He gets consistent pace and bounce even on traditionally sluggish Bristol pitches. Tall and lean, he is an aggressive, wicket-taking bowler. His first-class wicket tally stands at 70, with an impressive strike-rate - averaging a wicket every eight overs. He has a steeply rising, skiddy bouncer, which can find out the faint-hearted or the over-confident. He does perhaps use this too liberally, and in striving for extra pace bowls a lot of boundary balls.
His batting conversely is not the swashbuckling affair one might expect of such a player. He'll never give bowlers nightmares with his awkward technique, but he is capable of occasional spells of stubborn defence.
Of course, when Gannon struggles, he can become a liability. So long as he's fit next year, Gloucestershire should be prepared to risk him. (Sean Beynon, Copyright CricInfo January 2002)
NBC Denis Compton Award 1999