Wakefield Thornes cricket prospect Jawad Akhtar aiming to progress with Yorkshire

Wakefield all-rounder Jawad Akhtar is taking the next step towards his ambition to become a professional cricketer after signing an Academy contract with Yorkshire CCC.
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Jawad, who celebrated his 18th birthday last month, has been part of the county team’s juniors set up for a number of years and is now looking to kick on after being given a great opportunity to shine in 2024 with the Academy.

He will be looking to develop as a batter as well as a bowler as he has shone in both disciplines while learning his craft with Yorkshire and with his club, Wakefield Thornes.

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Akhtar has been earmarked as a cricketer of rich promise from an early age after first becoming part of the Yorkshire set up when aged just 10.

Highly promising all-rounder Jawad Akhtar in batting action.Highly promising all-rounder Jawad Akhtar in batting action.
Highly promising all-rounder Jawad Akhtar in batting action.

He already has some fantastic achievements to his name and is being watched by England as well after having trials with the national under 19s.

As part of the emerging players programme in 2023 he played for the Academy team and scored 700 runs as well as taking 35 wickets, finishing on top of the bowling averages in the process.

Additionally Jawad won the best young all-rounder award in the Yorkshire Southern Premier League’s end of season presentation.

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Proud uncle Mohammed Naz told the Express: “Jawad’s always loved cricket and has been playing since he was five years old.

Off spin bowler Jawad Akhtar in action during the 2023 season.Off spin bowler Jawad Akhtar in action during the 2023 season.
Off spin bowler Jawad Akhtar in action during the 2023 season.

"He is proud to play his cricket at Wakefield Thornes, where he started playing in the under 9s and played in all the junior age groups, the 11s, 13s, 15s, 17s and now the senior team.

"He’s been playing for the first team for the last three years and is a top order batsman for them and first change spin bowler.

"Jawad has won best junior player awards two years running in the South Yorkshire Premier League."

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Mohammed is also delighted to see his nephew making progress with Yorkshire as well.

Yorkshire Academy prospect Jawad Akhtar.Yorkshire Academy prospect Jawad Akhtar.
Yorkshire Academy prospect Jawad Akhtar.

He said: “Jawad has played for Yorkshire since he was 10 and has captained them at different age groups.

"He was Yorkshire’s most prolific all-rounder last year with the Academy and made his debut with the Yorkshire second XI, managing to get three wickets for 13 runs.

"Jawad has also managed to catch the eye of the England selectors who invited him to trial for the under 19s squad. Although not successful he will have further opportunities as he was only 17 at the time.

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"He’s now been awarded an Academy contract after his successful year with the bat and ball and we are looking forward to see how he progresses further.”Alongside his cricketing exploits Jawad is currently doing a sports diploma at Yorkshire Cricket College and hopes to get a sports related degree in the future.