Derek Randall had a career with Nottinghamshire that lasted from 1972 to 1983. He hit 1000 runs in a season eight times and scored two double centuries. His highest score of 209 against Middlesex in 1979 was accompanied by 146 in the same game.
He played for England in 47 test matches and 49 one Day International games.
Derek could be spectacular but also eccentric with his batting and he was also one of the best cover fielders in the game. Watching him patrolling the covers, he could be quite amazing, his anticipation and speed over the ground rather than strength of arm was what made him such a wonderful fielder – he would often run batsmen out simply by outpacing them to the wicket and whipping off the bails.
His Test batting record of 2,470 runs in 47 matches at an average of just over 33 betrays a lack of consistency, but when he was good, he was very, very good.
There was his match-winning knock at Sydney in 1978-79 when, with England trailing after the first innings by 142 runs, he held the second innings together with a magnificent 150. But that was against an Australian side depleted by the Packer ban.
On a different plain altogether was his 174 in 1977 in the Centenary Test against a strong Australia side at Melbourne.
With England chasing an improbable 463 to win, Derek took them unbelievably close – doffing his cap to the mighty Dennis Lillee in the process after just evading a bouncer – but in the end their valiant chase fell 46 runs short.
Since retiring from playing he has coached numerous school and university sides.
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