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Cricket Hong Kong

HK-born Dermot Reeve auctions prized Wisden Cricketer of the Year book after falling on difficult times

The Perth-based former England player says he is not in a desperate situation but needs funds to be able to visit his children in Sydney regularly

PUBLISHED : Wednesday, 28 June, 2017, 8:01am
UPDATED : Wednesday, 28 June, 2017, 11:16pm

Hong Kong-born ex-England cricketer Dermot Reeve is selling one of his prized possessions as he tries to raise money after falling on difficult “but not desperate” times.

The 54-year-old, who played three tests for England and 29 one-day internationals, is auctioning off his original Wisden Cricketer of the Year Almanack from 1996 - when he was named one of Wisden’s five world cricketers of the year in their annual awards.

It is one of the highest accolades any international cricketer can earn and Reeve, who has now recovered from a previous drug problem, said he needed the money to be able to visit his children in Sydney, Australia regularly.

“I had a divorce but I’ve managed to keep my kids in a nice house in Sydney and they’re enjoying the benefits of my good days when I was earning good money,” said Reeve, who was county side Warwickshire’s best captain ever after winning the treble in 1994 and two trophies in 1995, leading to his Wisden’s award. That season he also claimed 38 wickets, second only to South Africa’s Allan Donald.

“I left myself in a predicament but you know, I believe I’ll be OK and keep working and keep coaching and be able to look after myself.

“The reason I’m doing this ... it’s not as though I’m in a place of desperation. I’ve got a job in Australia coaching cricket ... for some people Wisden’s means a lot to them. I don’t own a house, let alone a bookcase, I live in Perth, my daughters live in Sydney and I’d rather have some funds to fly over to Sydney regularly to see them

“Flights, hiring a car and staying at an AirBnB ... all those things cost money.”

Reeve has four children, 28-year-old Emily, Jude (14), Tiana (12) and Jorjia (10).

He said he hoped that someone who understood the value of the Wisden’s brand, preferably from Hong Kong, would be the highest bidder for the book. As of Wednesday, the price had risen to £2,900 (HK$28,800) from a starting bid of £1,500.

“I don’t want it to seem as I’m disrespecting the Wisden’s name,” said Reeve, who represented Hong Kong in the early 80s. “Wisden is one of the finest institutions in world cricket.”

Reeve works as head coach of the Subiaco Floreat Cricket Club in Perth, Australia and led the team to the premiership.

The former King George V School student said he would also be keen to return to Hong Kong should the opportunity presented itself.

“I’m hoping to pick up some work next season,” he said. “There is a four-month window after the season in Australia and maybe there will possibilities, even in the UK.

“I’m very happy to come out to Hong Kong and do some work, consultancy possibly,” said Reeve, who on Wednesday completed a seminar in his old Warwickshire stomping ground of Edgbaston where he gave some motivational talks.