Cantrell sets his sights on a career in first-class cricket

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Woolpit’s Josh Cantrell has his sights set on a career in first-class cricket.

The 17-year-old all-rounder was a late call-up to the Suffolk side, following an injury to Bury St Edmunds captain Mike Comber, in the three-day fixture against Cambridgeshire at Copdock earlier this week.

Cantrell second top-scored with 30 on debut in Suffolk’s first innings, adding 40 priceless runs in a last-wicket partnership with Matt Wareing.

Although he only made six in Suffolk’s second innings, Cantrell took a catch and also bowled four overs of off-spin in Suffolk’s five-wicket defeat.

Cantrell, who is the county’s under-17 skipper, said: “I got a phone call from coach Andy Northcote on Saturday night asking ‘did I want to play tomorrow?’ And of course I said ‘yes’.

“Because I was 12th man the week before (against Northumberland at Bury St Edmunds) I was not too nervous, and then because we batted first I was able to relax.

“I was not under too much pressure as I was batting at number nine, but it was good to get some runs.

“The bowling at this level is so much better. There are not nearly so many bad balls as at under-17 level, where it is easier to score and you can keep the scoreboard ticking over because you know there will be a bad ball somewhere along the line.

“We had to wait for a bad ball and make sure we put it away when it came along.”

Cantrell, who is hoping to push for a regular place in Woolpit’s East Anglian Premier League side in the second half of the season, added: “I have really enjoyed the experience, and I now know what to expect if I get asked to play again.

“I would like to play first-class cricket and the more experience I get like this the better.”