Durham star ready for big year

Graham Onions
Graham Onions

GRAHAM Onions teamed up with his Durham pals again today for the new season – with the three Bs firmly on his mind: babies, benefit and bowling!

The England quick bowler was back in his county’s colours at the Emirates ICG for the club’s photocall and media day.

I feel very honoured that Durham have granted me a benefit.

And Onions hopes to be ‘working’ in it next Tuesday when the side take on Durham UCCE in their pre-season friendly.

The 32-year-old is all smiles off the field – he has just become a dad for the second time after wife, Emma, had daughter, Esmé, now a month old.

Add to the fact that Durham have awarded him a benefit for 2015 and the seamer is on cloud nine.

Onions’ attempts to make an early mark stalled when he was injured in the annual season opener for the MCC against LV= champions Yorkshire in Abu Dhabi last week.

But he told the Gazette that he is keeping his fingers crossed he could be bowling again next week.

“I was a bit disappointed with what happened,” he said. “To get invited to play in this, my aim was to try to perform to prove myself.

“I played in the Twenty 20 game and then I got four overs in the three-day game.

“I strained my groin, just a strain thankfully, not a pull.

“I hope I can play against the students next Tuesday and then hopefully I will be on the bus for Taunton for our first championship match at Somerset (a week on Sunday).”

It is a big year for the Gateshead lad who not only wants to start taking wickets again for his county but also enjoy a successful benefit.

He said: “I feel very honoured that Durham have granted me a benefit. I’d like to have some special times with the Durham members and the people who have supported me in my career with my home county.”

Four charities will also benefit from the series of money-raising events.

For more information go to grahamonionsbenefityear.co.uk

COCO: Comrades of Children Overseas, a North East charity which helps impoverished communities in East Africa and Ghana.

SIR Bobby Robson Foundation, which funds projects and research into fighting cancer.

lQUEEN Elizabeth Hospital Special care Baby Unit.

PROFESSIONAL cricketers Association Benevolent Fund.