Nottinghamshire signed experienced batsman Chris Nash on a three-year deal ahead of the 2018 season. He had spent his entire career with Sussex, winning six major trophies, so it was a surprise to many when he asked to be released from the last year of his contract. In joining Notts, Nash was re-united with Peter Moores, the coach who had first signed him for Sussex.
Christopher David Nash was born on 19 May 1983 in Cuckfield, Sussex. He developed through age-group cricket in his home county, before making his Sussex debut as a nineteen-year old in 2002. Whilst at University, he played First-Class cricket for Loughborough UCCE, returning to Sussex after his studies to establish himself in the County side from the latter half of the 2006 season. He proved to be a prolific run-scorer in all forms of the game, racking up 11,424 runs in First-Class cricket plus another 6,000 in limited overs formats. Notts had seen Nash’s batting skills at first hand on many occasions and four of his 23 First-Class centuries had come in fixtures between the sides. He had also taken more than 150 career wickets with his off spin. With a raft of senior players retiring, coach Moores was delighted to bring to Trent Bridge a player with such experience and dependability.
Chris Nash made his First-Class debut for Nottinghamshire at Old Trafford in April 2018. He played in nine Championship matches that season and with Steven Mullaney away with England Lions, captained the side at Essex and in the pink ball fixture with Worcestershire at Trent Bridge. Nash really made his mark in the Worcestershire match, delivering his best performances in a Notts shirt, scoring his first century for his new county with 139 and taking 2-4 when he brought himself on to bowl.
List-A cricket was scheduled for the early part of 2018 and Nash played in all eight Royal London One-Day Cup matches, scoring two fifties, as Notts’ defence of their trophy ended with a home quarter final defeat at the hands of Kent. He started the opening match of the Vitality T20 Blast in July but his night ended early when he sustained a serious shoulder injury attempting a catch and he only featured once more in any form of cricket that season.
Back to fitness for 2019, Nash played in the first nine First-Class fixtures and in five One-Day Cup matches before he was once again hit by injury, suffering concussion when struck on the helmet by Somerset paceman Jamie Overton. He missed over a month of the season but when he did return was again asked to lead the Championship side as Mullaney was himself out with injury.
Nash’s enforced lay-off meant that he missed the group stage of the T20 season but he returned with a vengeance in the home quarter-final against Middlesex. Chasing 161 to win, openers Nash and Alex Hales knocked off the runs in dramatic fashion in just 16.2 overs. Nash’s contribution was 74 from 53 balls as they set a new Notts partnership record in T20 cricket. In the semi-final at Edgbaston, the pair combined for an opening partnership of 51 to give the Outlaws a great start before the run chase faltered later on.
The abbreviated 2020 season was scheduled to be the last year of Chris Nash’s current playing contract and he was set to continue to play an important role in a young, developing side. With an eye to the future, he has already taken some initial steps in coaching, acting as a T20 Consultant with Durban Heat in South Africa and assisting with some coaching sessions with the England team over the winter period.
Nash played in the Bob Willis Trophy and the T20 Vitality Blast, being particularly unfortunate in the latter competition to sustain a shoulder injury in the semi-final and thus miss the final. He left the club at the end of that season with a view to pursuing further involvement in the game.
Nottinghamshire First-Class Number: 644