David Jonathan Willey
February 28, 1990, Northampton
Left hand Bat
Left arm Fast medium
Naturally competitive, willing to innovate, capable of changing a game with bat or ball, stunning run-out or implausible catch, David Willey has a lot going for him as a limited-overs cricketer.
His attacking approach as a left-arm quick and a clean-hitting batter first won him an international cap against Ireland in 2015 and he was regular member of England's ODI squads through that four-year cycle, but was squeezed out on the eve of the 2019 World Cup by the newly qualified Jofra Archer.
The son of former England allrounder turned umpire Peter Willey, David had long been recognised as feisty character on the county circuit before England came calling. Less than a year after his debut, he was a key part of the England side at the 2016 T20 World Cup. With 21 off 14 balls and 3 for 20 from his four overs, Willey would have been a contender for Player of the Match in the final if not for one Carlos Brathwaite.
Although he hasn't played a lot of long-form cricket since, Willey started off his first-class career in 2009 with a half-century for Northamptonshire. Initially classed as obdurate, like his father, but with a more orthodox technique, he spent a few seasons of reconnaissance before his combative style began to attract attention.
His bowling developed during the 2012 season when he claimed 43 first-class wickets with his brisk swing and seam. The following summer he was central to Northants' T20 success with a memorable all-round performance in the final: a 19-ball half-century (the fastest of the season), a direct-hit run-out from the deep, and a hat-trick to finish off the match as part of a four-wicket haul.
A back stress fracture followed by shoulder surgery prevented him from progressing beyond the Lions squad in time for the 2015 World Cup, but he was eventually picked for an experimental England side in Malahide. Further ODI and T20I opportunities followed.
In the 2015 Blast, he struck a match-winning century against Sussex in the quarter-final, including 34 off an over from the former England slow left-armer Mike Yardy. He destroyed Warwickshire's top order in the semi-final before Lancashire overcame Northants in the final.
At the end of the season, he joined Yorkshire, helping them to Finals Day in 2016, and hitting a career-best 118 from 55 balls against Worcestershire the following summer. His T20 skills also earned interest from overseas - he won a Big Bash title with Perth Scorchers, and an IPL deal at Chennai Super Kings - and it was in that format that he took on the Yorkshire captaincy in 2020.
Batting & Fielding
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List A Matches
|Super Giants vs Eastern Cape||--||0/15||03-Feb-2023||Durban||T20|
|Super Giants vs MI Cape Town||2*||1/26||02-Feb-2023||Durban||T20|
|England vs South Africa||8||0/38||27-Jan-2023||Bloemfontein||ODI # 4512|
|England vs Australia||12*||0/63||22-Nov-2022||Melbourne||ODI # 4480|
|England vs Australia||6||2/44||19-Nov-2022||Sydney||ODI # 4477|