Paul Joseph McMahon
March 12, 1983, Wigan, Lancashire
Right hand bat
Right arm offbreak
Trinity RC Comprehensive Nottingham, Oxford University
While Paul McMahon once promised to achieve great things on the pitch, it may be off the pitch where his cricketing potential is fulfilled. An off-spinner who represented Nottinghamshire at every level form U11, he made his first-class debut for the club when still a teenager in replacing the dropped Kevin Pietersen. But despite an outstanding record in the Second XI Championship (his 175 wickets at 20.80 apiece where the best since Andy Caddick claimed 167 at 18.70 in the early 1990s) and an impressive showing in the U19 World up earlier that year - he was generally regarded as England's best bowler in the tournament and subsequently captained the side - he found his opportunities at Nottinghamshire limited by a combination of seamer-friendly pitches and the presence of first Stuart MacGill and then Graeme Swann at the club. As a result, he was released at the end of 2006.
He continued to play at a high level, though. Educated at comprehensive school, he read law at Oxford (his nickname at Nottinghamshire was 'Boffin') and, having won his Blue in 2003, captained the university in 2004 and 2005. He made his highest score, 99, in the Varsity match victory of 2004 and also captained British Universities. He also captained Cambridgeshire from 2010 to 2015, leading them to Minor Counties Championship Eastern Division pennants in 2011 and 2013 and winning the Frank Edwards Trophy for the leading bowler in the Minor Counties in 2015. Somehow, he also found the time to coach Peterborough in Premier League club cricket.
But his legal career was just taking flight. After years at Bird & Bird, a highly regarded London law firm which advised the ICC during the prosecution of Salman Butt and co., McMahon was headhunted to join the ICC's legal team. Since 2015, he has worked in Dubai as Legal Counsel for the game's governing body and, as a member of MCC's Laws of Cricket committee, is (at the time of writing) the youngest person on an MCC committee.
As late as 2016, Scyld Berry, the cricket correspondent of The Daily Telegraph, suggested McMahon might be the best off-spinner available to England. But, by then, he was committed to a career in administration.
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