Liam Hurt is a seamer from Preston who came through the Lancashire age-groups, but he had to earn a professional contract with his home county ahead of 2018 via the circuitous route.
The pace man made his debut in the final Specsavers County Championship match against Leicestershire in 2019 and took his first wicket in the Bob Willis Trophy match against Durham in 2020, finishing with 4/27 in the second innings to bowl the Red Rose to victory.
Right-armer Hurt played for the Lancashire Academy in the Northern League in 2011 before playing for the county’s Under 17s side.
He debuted for the Red Rose twos in 2013.
But, by 2015, he was travelling round the country trialling with other counties such as Leicestershire, Gloucestershire and Northants.
Hurt even made his List A debut for Leicester in a Royal London One-Day Cup defeat against Durham in August 2015, taking two wickets and scoring 15 down the order with the bat.
Hurt also played briefly for the MCC’s Young Cricketers in 2015 and 2017, and his trials with other counties lasted until the early stages of the most recent summer before returning to Emirates Old Trafford.
He went on to take 19 wickets in 13 matches across all competitions for the second team and contributed down the order with the bat.
In the last three games of the season, he posted scores of 38, 42 not out and 25. His 42 came in the Championship final win over Hampshire on the Isle of Wight.
Hurt has played league cricket for teams such as Leyland, Ormskirk and Clifton.
In 2017, he helped Greater Manchester Cricket League side Clifton reach the NatWest T20 Club Finals Day at Derby, with his side losing out in the semi-final to Wimbledon.
He played in the same side as former Red Rose players Gareth Cross, his captain, and Steven Cheetham throughout that run.
He described signing his first pro contract as a dream come true.