England bowler Matthew Potts looks back on cricket journey as he visits boyhood club
In collaboration with Durham County Cricket Club, Vertu Motors’ latest video sees England bowler Matthew Potts reminisce on his journey in cricket so far as he visits his boyhood cricket club, Washington CC.
Potts, a graduate of the Durham academy, was called up to England's Test squad in June 2022, following a strong start to the County Championship season, in which he showcased his talents as a promising seam bowler in first-class cricket.
From playing on a hill in his Grandad’s back garden to representing his country, Potts recalled where his love for the sport began.
“My ambition has always been to play for England,” said Potts. “But being a youngster, you look up at these guys playing cricket on the TV and you’re like, ‘this is what I want to do’.”
“There was a hill round the back of my Grandad’s house and we used to go up there with a set of homemade wooden stumps. Originally, it was a cat basket and I would just knock them about in the field all day long.”
“I was pretty good at it, so my Mum and Dad and Grandad made the decision to start taking me to the cricket. That was at Philadelphia [Cricket Club], and I played at Philadelphia until I was 13, and then I made the transition to Washington Cricket Club”.
While visiting the Harraton Ground in Washington, his former coach, Adrian Wood, remembered the passion and competitiveness he had from such a young age.
“He was nippy then and a little bit aggressive,” said Wood. “Whereas most junior bowlers would run in, and you know, nice line and length, but Matty would one or two times think, ‘I might try and hurt him’. But Matty never had his talent dragged out of him. He knew he could do well.”
“I'm not sure if he thought he could go as high as he has. I mean, we were chuffed when he came at 14 and he has just progressed nicely from there.”
Making his first-class debut for Durham in the 2017 County Championship, Potts' “bullish character” still remained, as Neil Killeen, bowling coach at Durham, revealed: “He burst onto the scene as if he had played 100 test matches. At that point, he loved to tell everyone how to bat, how to bowl, how to field.
“He’s gone on from there and he’s still that same bullish character now. But a lot of that is what has got him to where he is today.”
The video concludes with Potts expressing his pride for his call up to the England Test squad to play New Zealand earlier this year, despite only just missing out on a place on the Lord's Honours Board.
“Getting picked for England was the best feeling in the world,” said Potts. “Obviously, it was something I’ve been working so hard towards. I was over the moon and I couldn’t put it into words.”
“For my debut, I found out the day before. Stokesy rang me and said 'Can you come downstairs for a sec?’, and he was like ‘Are you ready to be a test cricketer?’. And I was like ‘Abso-bloody-lutely’”
“I remember going off with cramp nine overs in on the first day, and I didnt know what was going wrong. I was like ‘Why is my body giving up on me now of all points [in my career]?’.”
“Obviously it was the nerves underneath. So walking off with cramp sitting on four wickets, with the potential of going on the Lord’s Honours Board, I was disappointed not to get five, but there’ll be plenty more opportunities to be on that Lord’s Honours Board.”