Tuesday 30 November 2010 

Bootle Star James Aiming For Ashes Glory

Bootle Star James Aiming For Ashes Glory
Bootle Star James Aiming For Ashes Glory
 

James Anderson will not be the only Lancastrian flying the Red Rose flag this winter as England aim to hold on to the Ashes in Australia.

Bootle CC star James Dixon will also be Down Under representing the England Deaf team as they bid for their own Ashes glory.

The inspirational all-rounder is profoundly deaf and communicates by using British Sign Language and lip-reading.

But the 23 year-old has not allowed his disability to affect his passion for cricket which saw him help Bootle to reach the Cockspur Club Twenty20 Finals Day at the Rose Bowl.

Along with the rest of the squad, James has been preparing for the Deaf Ashes since January.

James comes from a cricket loving family and began playing the game when he was seven years old at Southport and Birkdale CC.

He also represents the University of Central Lancashire’s cricket club, where he is studying for a post-graduate degree in sports coaching, having already completed a BA in sports coaching there.

James, whose ambition is to become the world’s leading wicket taker in international deaf cricket, said: “I would like to encourage young people with disabilities to get involved in cricket and play the game for fun. It has helped and encouraged me to socialise with my team-mates by using sign language and lip-reading.

“One of the most important aspects of deaf cricket is running between wickets – and we do this by using hand signals.”

Following the Ashes, James and his team-mates will be involved in a triangular tournament and t20 series against Australia and South Africa.

Bobby Denning, England Deaf squad head coach, added: "The squad has been preparing for the Deaf Ashes since January 2010. James has been an integral part of the squad for the past few years. He's benefited from the Talented Athlete Support Funding, which has provided him with one-to-one coaching sessions.

“It's been pleasing to see him settle into the Bootle first team this season, along with the appearance at the Cockspur Club Twenty20 Finals Day televised on Sky in September. The Deaf Ashes is quite simply the biggest competition for the squad to compete in and we expect James to be a key player during the season."