Billy Carroll has proved that the old adage "if your good enough then your old enough" is most certainly true. The three-year old is set to start playing junior cricket for his local club side, Buttershaw St Paul's cricket club in Bradford, for their under-nines team.
The gap between three and nine year olds is particularly big but clearly the club have seen something in young Billy that suggests he can handle playing with boys who are three times his age.
Billy, who bats and bowls, must not get sidetracked by his new found fame though as he still needs to concentrate on attending his private nursery. He is still not old enough to start full-time school yet.
Billy's dad, Paul, also started his cricketing career young. However, he started much later, at the ripe old age of five! Local newspaper, The Telegraph and Argus, also featured Paul back in 1980 when he too was seen as a child prodigy.
Proud Dad Paul spoke fondly about his son's exploits and love of the game.
He said: ‘It’s all he wants to do. When he isn’t playing he comes along to watch me play or he watches cricket on TV. He knows the rules and knows how to keep score.
‘I’ve played cricket all my life but have never seen anyone as good a player as Billy is at just three. I am so proud of him.’
Billy's grandmother Jayne Gill also described Billy's love of cricket.
“Billy lives and breathes cricket, he is very much like his dad. He has been involved in cricket all his life. When he was born there was a miniature cricket bat taken to the hospital. He will be batting and bowling.”
Maybe there will be clubs and counties alerted to Billy's extraordinary story but for now it is a breath of fresh air just seeing someone so young enjoying the game of cricket.
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