Michael Alexander Carberry
September 29, 1980, Croydon, Surrey
Left hand bat
Right arm offbreak
St John Rigby College
Michael Carberry, a strokemaking left-hander, abandoned his Hampshire season midway through 2016 in distressing circumstances when, at 35, he discovered he needed treatment on a cancerous tumour. An England career, amounting to six Tests, and a decade at Hampshire, his third county, had identified him as a left-handed opener of panache, particularly suited to the demands of T20, and a fielder of great athleticism.
Carberry revitalised his international career following a blood clot on the lung in 2010. Such was the threat to his professional career that just to make a full recovery was cause for celebration. But that did not prevent a certain disillusionment creeping in when he was one of the chief players to suffer from England's 5-0 Ashes whitewash in Australia in 2013-14. It was an aggrieved Carberry who returned to Hampshire with his international career seemingly spent, even the absence of convincing replacements for the role of Alastair Cook's opening partner not persuading the selectors to take another look. An occasional inexplicable error with the bat and in the field did not advance his case.
He began in county cricket at Kent, and then Surrey but became frustrated with a lack of opportunity and moved to Hampshire in 2006. The move did the trick and he made over 1000 first-class runs in a season for first time in 2007, a performance that earned him a call-up to the England Lions tour of India in early 2008 where he scored two hundreds and was also one of three centurions in the Lions' game against New Zealand in May 2008.
His reputation in domestic cricket continued to grow, and he scored 1251 runs at 69.50 in 12 County Championship in the 2009 season, with four hundreds - the highlight being a fluent 204 against Warwickshire at the Rose Bowl - until a broken finger ruled him out of the end of the campaign. But it was enough to earn a Test call up and he made his debut in Chittagong in March 2010 in place of the rested Andrew Strauss
His lung illness ruled him out of the England Performance Programme trip to Australia over the winter of 2010-11 just as he gained a foothold in the England side. It was a long road back. Carberry missed the first three months of the 2011 season but then returned to the Hampshire side with startling effect: he scored an unbeaten 300 during a Championship match against Yorkshire and shared in a third-wicket partnership of 523 with Neil McKenzie - a partnership record at the time for Hampshire.
Following his illness he was unable to take long-haul flights but he remained on England's radar with the selectors naming him in their Lions side to face the touring West Indies in May 2012.
In 2013, Carberry enjoyed a strong summer in one-day cricket with over 500 runs in the T20 competition, including a century in the quarter-final win over Lancashire. He was picked for England's ODI in Ireland and retained for the Australia series. He made only one half-century but England picked him to tour Australia and Carberry made his Test comeback. He did not disgrace himself despite England's whitewash but the selectors decide to enter a new era without him and Carberry's international career was effectively ended.
After leaving Australia, he played just once more for his country - in an ODI against Sri Lanka at Chester-le-Street the following May. If it was his final appearance in England colours it was an inglorious one - he scored six as England were skittled for 99.
His presence at the top of Hampshire's order remained as strong as ever, though. Even in 2015 when he did not make a first-class century, his consistency put him among the top runmakers in Division One and helped to bind Hampshire's spirit in a season where they escaped relegation on the final day. A dangerous T20 player, he was a vital component in a highly-successful Hampshire side and also played in the Big Bash for Perth Scorchers.
He moved to Leicestershire late in the 2017 season, enticed by a promise of the captaincy which he duly inherited in 2018. But the incoming coach, Paul Nixon, relieved him of the role in late May after a review, describing him as "slightly more reactive than proactive" and "a man of great integrity" replacing him with Paul Horton. Carberry took paid leave to consider his future as Leicestershire made it clear they wanted him to return as a player and later that season he indicated that he was considering legal action, his time at Leicestershire - and perhaps his entire county career - seemingly at an end.
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