Darren Gough's nicknames - Rhino and Dazzler - represent his personality as a cricketer and as a person. He was called 'Rhino' because of his aggressive, ebullient approach to life and the game of cricket. 'Dazzler' was derived from his showmanship- on and off the cricket field. Gough even won a dancing competition- unsurprising for the man who likes to 'gallery' himself and acts like the life of the party.
In his playing days for England, Darren Gough was a premier strike bowler- even when bowling in tandem with new-ball partner, Andy Caddick. Gough was just short of 6 feet, but possessed enough passion and skill to succeed on the field. He was always willing to try new things and it was his use of swing and variations that brought him many wickets at international and domestic level.
Born in Yorkshire on September 18th, 1970, Darren Gough- a proud Yorkshire man- made his First-class debut in 1989 for his native county. He went on to play 248 First-class matches for England, Essex and Yorkshire between 1989 and 2008. Gough scalped 855 wickets at an average of 27.15. He may have even fancied himself an all-rounder, having scored a First-class century and 20 half-centuries.
Gough's bowling was an asset to England- even helping the team rise from being an average team to a consistent, winning team at the turn of the 21st century. In his 58 test matches, Gough took 229 wickets at an average of 28.39. His batting was not crummy either.
Gough scored 855 runs at an average of 12.57. His first two half-centuries were scored early in his career- with his first half-century in 1994 (65 against New Zealand) remaining his best score. His counter-attacking 51 against Australia also gained him the approval of Aussie fans- who considered him an Australian at heart.
Gough also had a lengthy ODI career as well. He played 159 ODIs- a lot for an English player- and took 235 wickets at an average of 26.42. Gough's ODI economy rate is 4.39. He even managed to stay around the England team long enough to play two Twenty20 International matches for England.
A knee injury abbreviated Gough's Test career in 2003. However, he was reluctant to give up on his international career with England and continued paying the shorter form of the game. Gough's last few years in international cricket were characterised by a series of comebacks. When he was not selected for the 2007 World Cup in the West Indies, Gough had to accept that his playing days were over. Ever the fighter, he remained in the headlines until he announced his retirement from the First-class game in 2008; after many successful years for county and country.
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