A left arm quick bowler, Mark Foottitt made just 12 appearances for his home County, beginning and ending an injury-hit career at Trent Bridge. But it was performances for Derbyshire and Surrey that took him to the brink of England’s Test team.
Mark Harold Alan Foottitt was born in Nottingham on 25 November 1985. He attended Carlton-le-Willows School and was picked for various youth squads before making his Nottinghamshire Second XI debut in 2001 at the tender age of 15. He continued his development with Kimberley and with Papplewick & Linby in the Nottinghamshire Premier League and regular appearances for the County Seconds. His performances saw him selected for the England Under 19s winter tour but injury forced him to pull out of the squad.
Footitt made his first class debut for Nottinghamshire against Glamorgan in July 2005. Indian batsman Sourav Ganguly was his first victim and in the second innings he took 4-45. A year later he claimed his first five wicket haul with 5-45 in the County’s match with West Indies A.
Despite this encouraging start, Footitt would go on to make just eight first class appearances in his first stint at Trent Bridge. Injuries kept him on the sidelines for long periods and when he was fit, he found it difficult to force his way into a squad that had a battery of experienced pace bowlers.
Footitt moved to Derbyshire in 2010 and made his mark in 2013 when he took 42 first class wickets. His real breakthrough came in 2014 with 84 first class wickets at an average of under 20; his 106 dismissals in all competitions was the most by a Derbyshire bowler for almost 50 years. Footitt had established himself as one of the leading left arm quick bowlers in the country and was called into the full England squad during the 2015 Ashes series.
The following winter Footitt was chosen in England’s touring squad of South Africa but failed to make the Test side. He joined Surrey with the intention of proving his worth against First Division batsmen on better surfaces. Although he missed much of the first half of the 2016 season with a side injury, he recovered to play in half of Surrey’s fixtures, taking a career best 7-62 against Lancashire in July. In all, Footitt took an impressive 65 wickets in 17 appearances for Surrey.
With his family still in the East Midlands, Footitt asked Surrey to release him midway through the 2017 season and he was re-signed by Nottinghamshire. He made just four first team appearances during his second stint at Trent Bridge. Once again, injuries played their part, with Footitt hampered by a stress fracture of the neck sustained whilst re-appearing for Notts at Derby in August 2017.
Mark Footitt’s final appearance for Nottinghamshire was in September 2018 and he left the Club in July 2019. In January 2020 he started a role as general manager at Grantham Cricket Club, involving administration, playing and coaching.