Young English Cricketer Charlie Dean who has made it to England’s squad for the 2021-22 Ashes just months after making her international debut in September, credits the “no-fear environment” of the team’s camp which has helped her to be a match-winner at the big stage. In just her first series with the team which was against the White Ferns, Dean went on to be the joint-leading wicket-taker, finishing with 10 wickets recording her best spell of 4/36 in the 2nd ODI leading her team to victory.
Sharing her reaction to being selected for the squad hosting New Zealand with Cricday, the 21 years old said,
“It was a bit of a shock, really, to be told that I was going to be involved in the squad for the New Zealand series. The environment is so open and welcoming that I felt at home pretty quickly on and off the field.”
“That team environment is something that really encourages people to show what they can do and there’s no real fear of mistakes, there’s just, ‘this is what we want you to do, and this is what you can do, so go out there and do it’.
However, the competition ahead won’t be an easy one for the young all-rounder as she prepares to compete with the most successful team of women’s cricket in the competition which is the oldest cricket rivalry- The Ashes.
“The rivalry against Australia is something that I’ve not really come across before, ” Dean said.
Someone briefed me and said, ‘look, you know, they’re quite harsh against the old Pommies, so just be careful, know that you’re good enough and that’s okay.
“That’s something that I can get my head around and sort of be in my own little bubble so that if I play, then the battle won’t get to me too much. It’s something that you’ve always got to have in the back of your head and hopefully, the things I’ve done building up to it will prepare me well for that.”
Since Dean just has appeared in ODIs in international cricket, most probably she would only be seen in the three ODIs during the tour. Having said that, her great variations as a spin bowler create a high chance of her maiden inclusion in England’s Test and T20I squad also.
Further, Dean’s opportunity of sharing the dressing room with her captain Heather Knight in the inaugural edition of The Hundred a month before her international debut appears to have benefited her a lot as Knight is all praise of her. She appreciated her performance saying,
“Charlie’s been a good find. She’s added something a little bit different, and she’s had some success so far and I think she’ll be good on Australian pitches. She gets a lot of drops, a lot of overspin on the ball, which sometimes you need in Australia when it’s flat and it’s not turning sideways – you need that movement in the air to try and deceive, and she’s definitely got that.”
“She’s a very canny bowler, not just having the skills, she knows when to use them. She hasn’t played any red-ball cricket and we’ll have to have a little look at what to do selection-wise there, but I think she’s got the skills to be able to be successful in all formats and the way she’s throwing herself into things.
Such words of encouragement from experienced senior players like Knight inspire many youngsters, especially those who they consider as their role models.
Wishing Charlie Dean a Bright future ahead.
Loves all things female cricket