Somerset captain Marcus Trescothick has likened Jamie Overton to South Africa legend Allan Donald and believes the 19-year-old paceman could well go on to become a “great fast bowler”.
In a disappointing season for Somerset, Overton provided reason for cheer with a series of hugely encouraging performances that saw him called into England’s squad for the NatWest Series against Australia.
Although the teenager has been kept waiting for his international bow, he appears highly likely to have a bright future.
“The world is his oyster because he has all the attributes to be a great fast bowler,” said Trescothick, who played 76 Tests, 123 ODIs and three Twenty20s for England.
“He’s got height; he’s got power; he’s got pace; he can swing the ball. It’s a case then of drilling it into being that consistent bowler, where he keeps 90% of the pace that he bowls but gets more consistent and suddenly turns himself into someone like an Allan Donald almost.
“I’ve seen the best, I’ve played against the best and know what they need to become the best. If you could mould fast bowlers then he would definitely be part of that process.
“He’s brilliant in terms of his training ethic and approach to the game. He doesn’t complicate things too much, just runs in and bowls as fast as he can at the moment, and his attitude is great. I think it’s always nice when you get to see someone of the quality and calibre he is.”
Despite the emergence of Overton, whose highly-rated twin brother Craig missed a large chunk of the season through injury, Somerset only secured their top-flight status on the final week of the LV= County Championship season.
If their efforts in whites were disappointing, there was similar frustration for Trescothick on a personal level as he ended the season without a first-class century - for the first time since 1998.
“It’s been hard work, constantly grinding and not succeeding. At 37, the inevitable comments are going to be there, but they can talk and say what they want. I’m still hungry and I love doing what I do; I practice as hard as I ever have and it’s just not worked this year,” added the left-handed opener.
“I’ll continue to work hard over the course of the winter, striving to get it back and get ready for next season. There’s nothing going to change in that aspect.”
Having compiled 12 hundreds in 38 first-class matches as Somerset’s skipper over the previous three seasons, Trescothick is confident his poor form cannot be put down to the pressures of captaincy.
“It’s never been a problem so I’m not going to sit down and blame that this year,” he added.
“In the previous three years to this one of being captain it’s gone really well and I’ve played really well. It’s just this year I haven’t done.
“I have no thoughts of not being captain. I’ve really enjoyed being captain and still love doing the job and want to continue doing that in the future.
“It’s out of my hands, obviously, what the club do and what they decide, but I still want to carry it on. I’ve got a lot to give the team as captain and I want to drive us on to big things.”