Former Southern Premier League youngster Billy Mead follows up cup century against Waterlooville by making century on first class debut

Former Hampshire prospect Billy Mead followed up a cup hundred against Waterlooville by making a century on his first class debut.

By Simon Carter
Tuesday, 10th May 2022, 8:51 am

After starting out in the Hampshire League with Longparish, the 23-year-old wicket-keeper/batsman played for Hampshire Academy and hometown club St Cross in the Southern Premier League.

At the beginning of this month, he opened the batting for Berkshire club Datchet against Waterlooville in the National Cup.

There, he struck 117 off 94 balls, sharing an opening stand of 210 with skipper Joe Barrett (129 not out) as the hosts rattled up 302-3 off 40 overs at The Wally Gage Memorial Ground. Ville were all out for 180 in reply.

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Billy Mead followed up a cup century against Waterlooville by making a hundred on his first class debut

A few days later, on the back of two outings for Kent 2nds, Mead was handed his first class debut by Kent against the Sri Lankan Cricket Development XI at Canterbury.

Batting at No 7, he had to wait for his chance - Darren Stevens (168) and South African George Linde (103) sharing a 264-run stand for the fifth wicket.

When he got his chance, though, Mead took it - hitting an unbeaten 106 off 188 balls with eight fours and a six to become the 14th Kent player in history to score a century on their first class debut for the county.

Desperate to forge a career in the pro game, Mead has turned out for a handful of county 2nd XIs in recent years - Hampshire, Somerset, Surrey and Warwickshire prior to his Kent debut this year.

He has wintered in South Africa a few times, including spending two stints at potential England coach Gary Kirsten’s Academy in Cape Town.