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Meet Tymal Mills, A Phoenix Rising From The Ashes

The English T20 Fast Bowler, Tymal Mills


While we have witnessed many interesting cricketing stories during years of its rich history, one such tale to remember and salute is certainly that of Tymal Mills.

Tymal Mills: Early Life

Mills was born on the 12th of August 1992, in West Yorkshire and studied in the University Of East London. While growing up he was the jack of plenty of trades like Football, Basket-Ball and Horse -Racing but cricket was the sport which stole his heart away. When he turned 14, he shifted his focus completely towards cricket and there has been no looking back ever since for Tymal Mills.

Tymal Mills Practice
Image Source: Daily Express

When Tymal Mills Did A Sachin Tendulkar

Just like Tendulkar left his education mid-way to completely dedicate his career towards cricket, so did Mills when he left his Journalism course to focus towards cricket. Who knows? He might have just been blogging about another fast bowler today rather than being at the receiving end.

Tymal Mills: Early Career

First Class Debut

Tymal Mills was given an opportunity to make his first-class debut when he represented Essex during a game against Sri Lanka in June 2011. The English Cricket Board had scheduled a warm-up game between Essex and the Lankans as a part of one of the warm-up games of Sri Lanka’s tour of England.

Everyone was excited to see this new kid on the block. He was one of the Stars for England during the Under 19 World Cup back in the days. Mills only got to bowl 14 overs in the entire game though, thanks to the unexpected ‘English rains’, but he impressed everyone with his accurate line and length, and mainly his speed which was like a ‘Tracer Bullet’.

However, he could only pick up a single wicket in his first outing, but those who knew the game well, certainly understood that there was a ‘New Star’ in the making. While a few already started talking about him, there were many who still did not hear about him.

List-A Debut

He was then given a chance to apply his trade for the England Development XI against Sri Lanka-A, on the 8th of August 2011, where he managed to pick up 2 wickets while giving away 40 runs, in another rain-induced 31 over game. Once again, even though he was a bit wayward with his line and length, a bowler like Mills was always going to be the kinds to produce those magical deliveries time and again, and so he did.

While many believed conspiracy theories around that time that the world will end in 2011, and fortunately nothing of that sorts happened, the world actually just began for the young Tymal Mills in 2011, when he made both his First Class and List-A Debut.

Big Setback For Tymal Mills

Just when life was starting to be nice to Mills, the unthinkable happened in 2015. He was unfortunately diagnosed with a congenital back condition, which basically meant that his vertebrae and spinal cord were quite close to each other, way closer than that of an average human being. The doctors then advised him to take it easy, and take a complete break from any form of physical activity in order to avoid aggravating his problem, which could have further lead to even more severe heart complications.

Tymal Mills: The Warrior

The left arm fast bowler then did the right thing. Well, he exactly did what the doctor ordered, and completely rested it out. It wasn’t easy, it never is, to be away from something you truly love, and especially when Mills was on the verge to be the next big thing in England Cricket. Having said that, he was a mentally strong kid who decided to take it up his chin. Once he recovered sometime around 2016, it was like a re-birth for the left arm quickie.

He was soon back on his feet, up and running, while ensuring that his speed did not fall below 90mph, in spite of everything that happened to him. He knew that was his ‘USP’ and he made a deal with the doctors who allowed him to play as much cricket as he liked, only on the firm condition that he would listen to their advice of sticking to the shortest format of the game. To put it simply, with the kind of body condition he has, Mills from hereon could only play T20 cricket for the rest of his life to avoid further complications.

Tymal Mills: T20 Cricket

Natwest T20 Blast

Well, that’s the only format he can apply his trade in, so you might not see an ODI or Test Cricket section like we do for our other blogs in Cric Crak. The story of Tymal Mills, is as inspiring as that of a phoenix rising from the ashes, as he rose up when he life threw him the biggest bouncer. A year ago, he must have thought that he would have to say ‘Au Revoir’ to this beautiful game, even though he did not feel like, but now Mills was raring to make his debut for Sussex, and play against the ‘Big Boys’ of the game. There was the ‘Universe Boss’, Chris Gayle, waiting for him at the other end, and just before the game he stated that he would love to be the owner of his wicket by rattling his stumps. They said, real men are those who always back their words by their actions, and so he did, and how!

He literally destroyed the stumps of Chris Gayle and it seemed like the bails were doing double-cartwheels in the air. Such was the speed of his delivery, and not to forget the look in his eyes which were exactly like those of a fast bowler, looking to conquer the world by letting the ball do the talking, or make the ball talk rather.  Gayle could only make 5 runs in that game and the world took notice of the ‘Real Tymal Mills’ who was now fit and raring to prove himself in the shortest format of the game.

Tymall Mills England

Tymal Mills Bowling
Image Source: Wisden India

T20 Debut

It was at Rose Bowl on the 5th of July 2016 that he made his International Debut against Sri Lanka, and while he went wicket-less in his first outing, the fact that Lankan Tigers decided to play him out by managing only 22 runs off his 4 overs, clearly stated that they could not read the young man, and neither could they get used to his sheer pace.

T20 Freelancer

Considering any International team in the world plays the least amount of T20 cricket as compared to the ODI Format or Test Match Cricket, Mills was all set to travel around the world and apply his trade towards franchise cricket. He played for the Super-Smash tournament in New Zealand, and even a few other Global Tournaments like the Bangladesh Premier League, Big Bash League and Pakistan Super League to name a few.

Tymal Mills Indian Premier League

While his team-mate Ben Stokes stole the show during the IPL 2017 auctions, when he was sold to the Rising Pune Supergiants for a whopping Rs 14 Crore, Mills was not far behind either, as he was snapped for Rs 12 Crore by the Virat Kohli and AB de Villiers dominated- Royal Challengers Bangalore.  However he did not have the best of his debut season, and also got limited opportunities. Tymal Mills played 5 games in the tournament and ended up with as many wickets, and at an average of just over 30 with an economy hovering around 8 runs an over.

Tymal Mills Indian Premier League 2018

Tymal Mills RCB
Image Source: E Sport

As we mentioned above, the young lad did not have a great debut season and kind of faded away in between, but nobody would have imagined that the man who was the second most expensive pick during the auctions last round, would be completely disregarded by all the IPL team owners. There was quite a lot of disappointment around the English camp considering even 2 other world-class English-Men, Joe Root and Eion Morgan did not get a contract either.  During that time, Mills was on the verge of representing his team, Hobart Hurricanes, in the semi-final of the Big-Bash Leauge. To add to his misery, he was given the axe even as far as Hobart was concerned. He was not up to the mark throughout the tournament and as a result, they decided to finally bench him.

That was a double blow for Tymal Mills, and the man certainly might have been hurting at that point of time but hey, a few years ago he thought he could never even play the game! And so in the end, he was still a winner. The fact that people expected more than surface level initiatives from a man who could barely jog a few years ago, proved that he has certainly come a long way from where he began.

Tymal Mills: Back To The Basics

The left arm fast bowler has now decided to go back to his boyhood club and has signed a short-term deal to apply his trade for Minor Counties Cricket for Suffolk, in an attempt to get some game-time in order to find his passage back to represent the Three Lions all over again.  For those who did not know or wish to know rather, the Suffolk Cricket Club is one of the 20 minority cricket clubs and is supported by the domestic structure of England and Wales. Suffolk is an East-Anglian County in England with very rich cultural heritage associated with it.

Tymal Mills 2018

Well, England is just left with just one sole T20 game this year, as we type this on the 20th of July 2018.  The Three Lions will set a date with Sri Lanka at their own backyard on the 27th of October 2018. Considering the Lankans always like to make their pitches turn, the ever so hard-working Tymal Mills might need to wait for a bit longer before he could don his National jersey all over again. Having said that, with the amount of franchise cricket being played these days, there is certainly no dearth of opportunity and Mills would be eager to make his mark and stamp his authority wherever in the world he plays.

Tymal Mills IPL 2019?

Well, considering the World Cup is immediately after the Indian Premier League 2019, the England Cricket Board might not wish to risk many of their key players and Mills, on the other hand, is only designed to play T20 cricket. As much as he would have liked to be a part of that World Cup which he, unfortunately, can’t, the probability of Tymal Mills getting a deal in the IPL 2019 is certainly quite high and with all honestly, Cric Crak truly believes that the left-handed express bowler deserves it all.

You knew his name, now you also know his story and Cric Crak will say ‘Adios Amigos’ to you on that note, and hopes that you make it a beautiful day ahead. More power to you Tymal Mills from the Cric Crak family!

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