Lightning-quick Tymal Mills can be Essex match-winner - Paul Grayson

Tymal Mills

Tymal Mills - Credit: Archant

Essex head coach Paul Grayson is refusing to put the shackles on terrifying Suffolk paceman Tymal Mills this season, and has tipped him for the top.

Regularly reaching speeds of over 90mph, the Mildenhall 21-year-old is developing a fearsome reputation and is a potential match-winner on his day.

The ex-Mildenhall seamer took 11 wickets at an average of 43.36 runs in first-class cricket last season, and spent the winter with the England Performance squad in Australia.

However, Grayson wants the Yorkshire-born star to add more consistency to his game in order to challenge the county’s triple-threat of Graham Napier, David Masters and Ipswich’s Reece Topley, the latter who ended last summer as Essex’s leading wicket-taker in all forms of the game.

“Tymal is up there with the quickest bowlers in the world and everyone at the club is excited about his progress.

“We were very aware when he first joined us that he had a special ingredient,” said Grayson, whose side start their season at home to Derbyshire in Division Two of the County Championship, on April 13.

“The last thing we want to do is turn him into an 80 miles-per hour swing bowler, we want to keep him up there at 90.

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“If he can improve his control, (bowling) discipline and wicket-taking, and get the ball in the business area more often than not, then he will trouble the best players.”

Having only taken the game up seriously eight years ago, Mills’ progress has been rapid, but he may have to bide his time under Grayson this campaign.

“It’s our duty to give Tymal more games but he is not just going to get picked automatically,” Grayson added.

“It was a bit freaky that our three main bowlers did not pick up an injury last season and they took over 50 wickets each. At some stage this season, that could happen, or a player could lose form.

“That could create an opportunity for someone else and I need five or six bowlers ready to play at any stage.”

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