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The TWC Interview: Dominic Cork

April 7th, 2009 by Benj Moorehead in County cricket, Interview, Miscellaneous

Dominic Cork will play for Hampshire in the 2009 season after spells with Derbyshire and Lancashire. He played 37 Tests for England, taking 7 for 43 against the West Indies on Test debut in 1997. He was speaking to Benj Moorehead.

You were in Lahore during the March terror attacks on the Sri Lankan team.

I was doing some TV commentary out there. It was too close for comfort, something I’ll remember for a very long time. I heard the shots and the bombs going off. And I heard the grenade go off. I didn’t see anything really. I was about 300 yards ahead of them. I’d just gone through the roundabout where it had happened and I was just getting out the car when the driver said ‘run!’ So I ran into the stadium. I didn’t then realise it was the Sri Lankans who were being attacked. Then I saw the bus come in, saw the bullet holes, saw the players being carried off with shrapnel wounds. I couldn’t believe I was seeing people I was socialising with at night who had been targeted with the attempt to kill.

Does it make you think twice about touring the subcontinent?

Definitely. I think it’s not just myself – it’s everybody who’s involved in international sport. Security is a big issue and it will have to come to the forefront of everybody’s decision whether it’s journalism or playing professional cricket. You have to make decisions. For me it’s still a little bit early to say whether I go back or whether I wouldn’t go back.

Moving on to county cricket: was there a point after last summer when you considered retiring to pursue a media career?

No. As long as I can run and breathe I’ll still play cricket. I enjoy the sport. I get excited about every season when it starts. Every day when I wake up I feel thankful that I have played cricket for such a long time.

Why have you come to Hampshire?

Hampshire proved towards the middle and end of last season they have a lot of talent. They’re a young squad mixed in with a few senior players like myself, John Crawley, Nic Pothas and Dimi Mascarenhas. And there’s some talent coming through, great facilities and a great stadium under a good management group. So it was an easy decision.

What do you see your role as in this Hampshire side?

I’m here to perform to my optimum. I still feel that I have a lot to offer in cricket. But also to help the younger players, to take them to one side and try to advise them and hopefully make them become better players.

What happened at Lancashire?

I was promised that my future was guaranteed at Lancashire. But it wasn’t. I was very disappointed they made that decision but when one door closes another one opens and I’ve now joined a fantastic club in Hampshire and if I can do well this season that’s the main thing. If I can do well against Lancashire that’s even better.

So there will be an extra incentive when Hampshire play Lancashire?

Erm, I’ll let you consider that one.

How are relations with Lancashire now?

I still get on with a lot of the players.

What’s behind Lancashire’s failure to win titles?

I see it in two things: they have the players to win it and they’ve had one coach in eight years.

How long do you see yourself playing on until?

Probably until I’m about 49 I was thinking. That seems like a good age. Retire at 49 and then have a great big birthday party at 50.

What do you make of the furore over Australians signing for counties prior to the Ashes?

I hear the ECB moaning about it. For me the ECB should get their own house in order before they start thinking about whether Australians should play as overseas players. Stuart Clark is one of the best overseas players a county can have. To say that he shouldn’t play in county cricket is rubbish. If it means that he’s playing before the Ashes series then so be it. Counties need to be successful. Counties need to win trophies. You employ the best overseas player you can.

England to win the Ashes this summer?

Just. I think it will be 2-1. England need to make sure their big players are ready to go, the likes of Pietersen, Flintoff, Harmison. I’m a big believer in bringing Michael Vaughan back and batting him at No.3.

There’s talk about who will be the fourth seamer – someone like Matthew Hoggard?

Not sure if they’ll go for Hoggard. I’m a big lover of Matthew Hoggard but you’ve got Jimmy Anderson, Stuart Broad, Saj Mahmood and Chris Tremlett. I think they’ll look to go with pace and blast the Australians out like they did last time with that awesome foursome.

Dominic Cork was at Canterbury’s flagship store at Westfield London to launch the 2009 Hampshire strips.

Benj Moorehead is editorial assistant of The Wisden Cricketer

Posted in County cricket, Interview, Miscellaneous |

2 Responses to “The TWC Interview: Dominic Cork”

  1.   County Cricket 2009 Division 1 preview « says:

    [...] from June. In the meantime, Australian Marcus North comes in as an overseas player to add runs, and Dominic Cork also arrives following his release by Lancashire. Chris Tremlett will also be key for the attack, [...]

  2.   Dominic Cork on running in and taking wickets says:

    [...] repetitive. Still, with such informed prognostications on the game, you can see why Cork has done commentary work on international cricket, and is a go-to man for the BBC for player insights on events such as [...]

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