Tributes to former Kent bowler Graham Dilley

Wednesday 5th October 2011

Kent Cricket Chairman, George Kennedy has paid tribute to former Kent, Worcestershire and Englandbowler Graham Dilley who has died aged 52 after a short illness.

Dilleyappearedin 109 first class matches for Kent, taking257 wickets at 27.80, and 103 one day matches, taking131 wickets at 22.03.

He also played 41 Test Matches and 36 One-Day Internationals for England during a ten year international career which encompassed two Ashes wins in 1981 and 1986-87.

One of the quickest bowlers of his generation,Dilley took 138 Test wickets at 29.78 for his country, but his best remembered contribution to the England cause came with the bat – supporting Ian Botham in a 117-run partnership which helped England to a famous Ashes Test win over Australia at Headingley in 1981.

After retiring, he moved into coaching and enjoyed spells as an Assistant Coach with the England Men’s team and Bowling Coach to the England Women’s team before taking up a position as Head Cricket Coach at Loughborough University.

George Kennedy paid tribute to Graham Dilley, commenting; "The entire Club are saddened by the passing of Graham, who served Kent with great distinction during his time here. Our thoughts are with his family at this tragic time."

ECB Chief Executive David Collier also commented: “Graham made a life-long contribution to the game of cricket at all levels and we are deeply saddened by the sad news this morning . He will be fondly remembered for his contributions both as a player and a coach.

Graham inspired many young cricketers through the University programme and was a highly respected coach to our representative teams. Few will forget his contribution during the historic Ashes win at Headingley in 1981 and the part he played in two Ashes series victories. Graham will be sadly missed by all his friends throughout cricket and ECB sends our deepest condolences to Graham’s family."

ECB Managing Director, Hugh Morris said: “This is very sad news for Graham’s many friends and colleagues in cricket both in this country and overseas. As well as being a bowler of the highest class, Graham made an immense contribution to our game as a coach and his ability to impart his knowledge and wisdom to future generations of young cricketers will be sorely missed.“

Graham Dilley was an inspirational cricketer, and Kent Cricket have received a number of tributes from supporters. The Club will be creating a dedicated tribute page on the website; if you would like to contribute, please email