Burbage and Easton Royal have pulled off a coup with the signing of former Blackcaps star George Worker for their 2022 West of England Premier League campaign.
An absolute run machine…
Worker is one of New Zealand cricket’s most accomplished batters. Since his debut for Central Districts well over a decade ago (2007), the left-hander has churned out nearly 14,000 runs across the three formats.
His journey started with the New Zealand Under-19s (2007-08), playing alongside current stars Williamson, Neesham, Boult, and Southee. He would go onto become a New Zealand A regular (2012-19) and would feature in 10 ODI’s and 2 T20I’s for the Blackcaps (2015-18).
During this period, Worker was arguably New Zealand’s most prolific domestic batter. In Ford Trophy (List A) cricket, he belted a career-best 196 during his chart-topping 2014/15 campaign (538 runs at 48.90). Worker would finish third on the charts the following season (641 runs at 58.27) with the highest score of 159. He would then top the charts in 2016/17, with yet another daddy hundred (181) amongst 659 runs at 82.37. In the red-ball format (Plunket Shield), it was a similar trend with 4 centuries during tallies of 610 runs at 61 (2015/16), and 486 runs at 60.75 (2016/17).
Despite his domestic numbers, and international success (272 runs at 34, and 90 runs at 45, in ODI’s, and T20I’s, respectively), it’s surprising Worker hasn’t added to his 12 international outings, playing his last match for the Blackcaps in November 2018.
And dominance abroad…
Worker, who also bowls useful left-arm spin (100 plus domestic wickets) has also enjoyed Franchise T20 exposure with stints in Canada for the inaugural Global T20 League (Montreal Tigers in 2018), and in the Caribbean Premier League (Jamaica Tallawahs in 2019).
Prior to this, he was a club cricket regular, playing stints in England (St Cross – 2009, 2016; Knowle and Dorridge – 2017-18), Scotland (SMRH – 2011), and the Netherlands (Rood en Wit – 2013). During his Scottish stint, Worker’s success culminated with Scotland inclusion, and he went on to top the CB40 competition run charts.
Birmingham League record-breaker
A few years later (2017), he would go on to break the long-standing Birmingham and District Premier League record – one previously held by Doug Slade (West Bromwich Dartmouth) set back in 1978 (1,407 runs). Worker tormented bowling attacks in the world’s oldest cricket league scoring 1,645 runs all with an average of 126.54. Quite incredibly, he scored 9 hundreds in his 17 innings (183, 169*, 104*, 138*, 173, 157, 192*, 145, 124), all with a strike rate of 126.65. He scored 38.61% of his club’s runs, and took 33 wickets at 12.39 for good measure, to help guide his Knowle and Dorridge club to the Premier title.
Burbage bound in 2022
Worker returned to the club the following season (783 runs at 52.20 and 29 wickets at 17.86), and now after a 3-year hiatus, is set to return in 2022. The lucky recipient is ambitious Wiltshire-based club, Burbage and Easton Royal who have high hopes for promotion to the top tier (Premier 1) of the West of England Premier League next summer.