University of Gloucestershire graduate James Tomson has finished his impressive first season as data analyst at Chattogram Challengers in the Bangladesh Premier League.
Surrey batsman Will Jacks starred for the Challengers, topping the run scoring charts. Tomson spoke exclusively to ParkLife Sport during the tournament, revealing Jacks’ unique qualities which make him valuable in franchise cricket competitions across the world.
“Players are getting better at hitting the ball now, so we have types of batters called bluff right-handers and bluff left-handers,” explained Tomson.
“Will Jacks is a bluff left-hander because he strikes at 140 with the ball spinning away from him, so he has the same impact as a left-handed batter. Whereas the traditional right-handed batter struggles against a right arm off-spinner and left arm leg-spinner.
“Jacko doesn’t have that effect. He’s a bluff left-hander that can still hit off-spin.
Although the Challengers had a mixed competition they were spearheaded by Jacks. The Englishman made a huge impact in his first season in South Asia, scoring 414 runs at a strike rate of 155, averaging 41.40.
Tomson, who helped Birmingham Phoenix to the inaugural Hundred final and also joins the coaching staff for the University men’s cricket team when he’s home, was part of the Challengers team that qualified for the play-off stage, losing to eventual winners the Victorians.
The 10th edition of the up-and-coming franchise competition came to a dramatic conclusion on Friday with Comilla Victorians crowned champions after a final ball victory over Fortune Barishal.
Despite England white ball star Moeen Ali and ex-South Africa captain Faf Du Plessis being two of the biggest names the tournament is still a significant step down from cricket’s showpiece events.
The Indian and Pakistan Premier League are considered as higher quality leagues, but the BPL is still dubbed a good indicator of a player’s white ball skills.
Jacks himself has already received an England call-up in last summer’s Covid hit ODI home series against Pakistan but is yet to play a T20 game for his country.
As for Tomson, he’ll be waiting nervously as he awaits a call which will determine if he is a part of the Phoenix’s analytical staff this summer.