Ivan Alfred Astley Thomas
September 25, 1991, Greenwich, Kent
Right hand bat
Right arm medium fast
Ivan Thomas headed to Australia in late 2019 hoping a stint in NSW Premier Cricket could revive a stop-start career. A triple stress fracture of the back at the age of 16 almost ended Thomas's dreams of becoming a professional cricketer. The 6ft 4in fast bowler missed two seasons out of three in his teens but, aged 20, was called into Kent's first team for a Championship match against Essex in 2012, taking 2 for 29 from 16 overs. He also played against the touring South Africans later that summer (dismissing JP Duminy) and looked to have a promising future, provided fitness issues did not derail him any further.
Highly regarded at Canterbury for his ability to extract bounce and movement from a high action, Thomas has endured a torrid seven years since. Dogged by injury in 2013, a promising 2015 season, which yielded 27 first-class wickets, was met by two further years of injury and illness, including minor surgery in 2017 to treat an irregular heartbeat following routine screening.
Things began to look up in 2018 when Thomas played 11 Championship matches with reasonable success, including 24 wickets at an average of 26.25 and a first-class career-best haul of 5 for 91 at Leciestershire - where he took nine wickets for the match - as Kent earned promotion. The county showed their faith by awarding him a two-year contract extension later that year, despite a serious knee injury late in the season which at the time was expected to rule him out for at least nine months. Thomas ended up missing the entire 2019 English season before joining up with Sydney side Western Suburbs.
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