Tom Lexley William Cooper
November 26, 1986, Wollongong, New South Wales
Right hand Bat
Right arm Offbreak
Middle order Batter
University of NSW
An aggressive batsman who was born in Wollongong, in New South Wales - the same coastal city which produced Brett Lee - Tom Cooper now plays his club cricket for University in Adelaide. An Australian Under-19 representative - he made 104 against South Africa in the 2005-06 Youth World Cup - Cooper broke into the senior South Australian side in November 2008.
His early successes came in limited-overs games, starting with 53 in his first one, against Western Australia at Adelaide Oval, and a month later he hit 101 against New South Wales at the SCG. But he really opened eyes with an innings of 160 not out for the Prime Minister's XI against the touring West Indians at Canberra in February 2010. Cooper spanked six sixes and 14 fours, and made a decent game of it after similar fireworks earlier from Chris Gayle (146 from 89 balls) had propelled the West Indians to an eye-watering total of 399 in their 45 overs.
Later in 2010, Cooper decided to play in the Netherlands, from where his mother hails. This connection allowed him to be fast-tracked into the Dutch national side, and he made an unprecedented start by scoring half-centuries in each of his first three full one-day internationals. He added a century in his fifth game, and 96 in his seventh - both against Afghanistan - at which point his ODI average stood at a lofty 81.33, admittedly all against Associate opposition. It dropped a little when he encountered Test bowlers (with 8 v Bangladesh in Glasgow). Time will tell if Cooper can emulate Dirk Nannes and swap an orange shirt for a green-and-gold one.
Batting & Fielding