Ryan Burl

Ryan Burl

Player Bio

Ryan Burl is a name that embodies passion, dedication, and an unwavering commitment to the sport of cricket. Born as Ryan Ponsonby Burl on April 15, 1994, in Marondera, this Zimbabwean cricketer has carved a niche for himself in the international cricket arena. A left-hand lower-middle-order batter and an occasional legspinner, Burl's journey from the cricketing fields of Marondera to the international stadiums is nothing short of inspiring.

Early Life and Entry into Cricket

From a young age, Burl exhibited a keen interest in sports. While he enjoyed playing squash during his school days, it was the camaraderie of the cricket team that truly captivated his heart and soul. This love for the sport and the team spirit it fostered made him aspire to be an international cricketer. His educational journey took him to Peterhouse Boys School, located outside of Harare. This institution has been renowned for producing notable sports personalities, including England internationals like Gary Ballance and the Currans (Sam and Tom), Italian rugby star Sebastian Negri, and Olympic rower Peter Purcell-Gilpin.

Burl's cricketing journey began in earnest when he made his debuts for Zimbabwe U-17 and U-19 within a short span of a month in the 2010-11 season. His talent was undeniable, and it wasn't long before he made his first-class debut for Mashonaland Eagles in 2014. In just his second match of the Logan Cup that season, Burl showcased his batting prowess by scoring 92 and 66, indicating his potential to the cricketing world.

His consistent performances at the domestic level caught the eyes of the selectors. A significant milestone in his career came when he scored a century and two fifties against Afghanistan A in January 2017. This outstanding performance paved the way for his One Day International (ODI) debut the following month against the senior Afghanistan side. By the end of that year, Burl had also donned the white jersey, making his Test debut against the formidable South African team.

Burl's cricketing journey, however, was not just limited to representing Zimbabwe. He has also been a part of various teams like the Chattogram Challengers, Elite International Cricket Academy, Mashonaland Eagles, Mid West Rhinos, Mis Ainak Knights, Rising Stars, Sylhet Strikers, Zimbabwe A, Zimbabwe Chairman's XI, Zimbabwe Select XI, and Zimbabwe Under-19s. His versatility and adaptability have made him a sought-after player in various leagues, including the Bangladesh Premier League (BPL) and Afghanistan's Shpageeza Cricket League.

Rise in International Cricket

Ryan Burl's ascent in international cricket has been a testament to his sheer determination and skill. After making his mark in Zimbabwe's domestic circuit, he was soon called up to represent the national side. In February 2017, he achieved a significant milestone by making his international debut for Zimbabwe, which marked the start of his journey on the global stage.

He made his One Day International (ODI) debut against Afghanistan at Harare Sports Club on February 16, 2017. Later that same year, he was selected to play for Zimbabwe in their one-off Test match against South Africa. He made his Test debut against the Proteas on 26 December 2017 in the Boxing Day Test . Not stopping at the longer formats, Burl also made his mark in the shortest format of the game, making his Twenty20 International (T20I) debut for Zimbabwe on 5 February 2018.

Notable Performances and Achievements

Throughout his career, Burl has showcased moments of brilliance that have left an indelible mark on the cricketing world. One such instance was during the 2019–20 Bangladesh Tri-Nation Series against Bangladesh. In this match, Burl scored a staggering 30 runs off a single over bowled by Shakib Al Hasan, making it the second-highest runs scored by a Zimbabwean batsman in a T20I over.

Another remarkable feat came in August 2022 during a T20I series decider against Bangladesh. In a crucial juncture of the game, Burl smashed Nasum Ahmed's over for a record 34 runs, which included five sixes and a four. This explosive batting display propelled Zimbabwe to a defendable total, which they successfully protected, sealing a series win. His 34 runs in that over equalled the record set by renowned players like Tim Seifert and Ross Taylor.

However, it's not just his batting that has drawn attention. In September 2022, during an ODI against Australia in Townsville, Burl showcased his bowling prowess by picking up his maiden ODI five-wicket haul. He took 5 wickets for just 10 runs in a span of 18 deliveries, leading to a batting collapse by the Australian side. This performance not only restricted Australia to a low score but also paved the way for Zimbabwe's historic first-ever ODI win on Australian soil. His figures of 5/10 remain the best by a Zimbabwean bowler against Australia and are also the second-best by a visiting leg spinner on Australian soil.

Challenges and Setbacks

Like many athletes, Burl's journey has not been without its challenges. In May 2021, he highlighted the struggles faced by an average Zimbabwean cricketer. Through a tweet, he shared a picture of his worn-out cricket shoes, revealing how he had to glue them together to continue playing. This tweet not only shed light on the financial constraints faced by Zimbabwean cricketers but also implied a lack of adequate support from the Zimbabwe Cricket Board. However, this candid revelation led to a positive outcome. Puma, a leading sports brand, stepped in to sponsor Ryan Burl's cricketing gear, ensuring that he and potentially other Zimbabwean cricketers wouldn't have to face such issues in the future.

Ryan Burl's journey in international cricket has been a blend of highs and lows. His notable performances have etched his name in the annals of cricketing history, while his challenges have showcased his resilience and determination. As he continues to represent Zimbabwe on the global stage, fans and cricket enthusiasts can look forward to many more memorable moments from this talented all-rounder.

Current Status in the Cricket World

As of 2023, Ryan Burl continues to be an integral part of the Zimbabwean cricket team. His versatility as an all-rounder has made him a valuable asset in all formats of the game. With 41 ODIs, 58 T20Is, and 3 Test matches under his belt, Burl has accumulated a commendable number of runs and wickets. His batting average in T20Is stands at an impressive 25.94, while his first-class average is an even more notable 35.02.

Beyond the numbers, Burl's adaptability and resilience on the field have made him a mainstay in the national side. He has also expanded his horizons by participating in various domestic leagues around the world. From the Bangladesh Premier League, where he played for teams like the Chattogram Challengers and Sylhet Strikers, to the Shpageeza Cricket League in Afghanistan, Burl's presence is felt across different cricketing landscapes.

His recent performances, especially against top-tier teams like Australia, have solidified his reputation as a formidable opponent. With the cricketing world's eyes on him, Burl is expected to play a pivotal role in Zimbabwe's future campaigns, including potential World Cup appearances.

Ryan Burl's journey in the cricketing world serves as an inspiration for many budding cricketers, especially those from countries where the sport faces numerous challenges. His rise from the domestic circuits of Zimbabwe to making a mark on the international stage is a testament to his dedication, skill, and passion for the game.

His legacy is not just about the runs he scores or the wickets he takes; it's about the hope and determination he embodies. By highlighting the struggles faced by Zimbabwean cricketers and advocating for better support, Burl has also played a role in bringing about positive changes off the field.

His impact extends beyond the boundaries of the cricket pitch. For many young Zimbabwean cricketers, Burl stands as a beacon of what is possible with hard work, perseverance, and a love for the game. As his career progresses, his legacy will undoubtedly be that of a player who not only showcased exceptional talent but also championed the cause of his fellow cricketers.

When did Ryan Burl make his international debut for Zimbabwe?
Ryan Burl made his international debut for Zimbabwe in February 2017.
What is Ryan Burl's highest score in T20Is?
Ryan Burl's highest score in T20Is is 57.
Which teams has Ryan Burl represented in domestic leagues?
Apart from Zimbabwe's national side, Burl has played for teams like Mashonaland Eagles, Mis Ainak Knights, Chattogram Challengers, and Sylhet Strikers, among others.
Did Ryan Burl receive a sponsorship after highlighting the struggles of Zimbabwean cricketers?
Yes, after Burl tweeted about the challenges faced by Zimbabwean cricketers, Puma stepped in to sponsor his cricketing gear.
Has Ryan Burl ever taken a five-wicket haul in ODIs?
Yes, Ryan Burl picked up his maiden ODI five-wicket haul against Australia in September 2022, registering figures of 5/10.