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Sunderland school's 'double pride' as England's new fast bowling hero Matthew Potts follows Jordan Pickford in sporting success

A former Sunderland student who attended the same school as Jordan Pickford has made his Test cricket debut for England.

Monday, 6th June 2022, 8:43 pm

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Former St Robert of Newminster Catholic School sixth form student Matthew Potts, 23, took seven wickets for England against New Zealand at Lord’s on Thursday, June 2.

The new fast-bowling hero began his cricket career at Washington before moving onto play for Durham County Cricket Club.

The 23-year-old's national sporting status sees him follow in the footsteps of footballer Jordan Pickford, who also attended St Robert of Newminster Catholic School and Sixth Form.

England's Matthew Potts during day two of the First LV= Insurance Test Series at Lord's Cricket Ground, London. Picture date: Friday June 3, 2022. PA Photo. See PA story CRICKET England. Photo credit should read: Adam Davy/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use without prior written consent of the ECB. Still image use only. No moving images to emulate broadcast. No removing or obscuring of sponsor logos.

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Nicknamed ‘Speedy’ during school, Jordan Pickford ‘wanted to do everything at 100mph’ and according to his former PE teacher Alan Fisher, this helped fuel England’s drive to the Euro 2020 final.

Stephen Langstaff Head of PE at the school said: “Matthew joined us at Sixth Form and he has always been naturally confident, he has the confidence of an elite sportsman.

"He always wanted to be successful and we are all really pleased for him, it’s fantastic news.”

England promised to wow fans with an aggressive brand of cricket and were on course for a dominant start to the international summer.

England's Matthew Potts during day two of the First LV= Insurance Test Series at Lord's Cricket Ground, London. Picture date: Friday June 3, 2022. PA Photo. See PA story CRICKET England. Photo credit should read: Adam Davy/PA Wire. RESTRICTIONS: Editorial use only. No commercial use without prior written consent of the ECB. Still image use only. No moving images to emulate broadcast. No removing or obscuring of sponsor logos.

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Matthew Potts was at the forefront of that effort, taking standout figures of four for 13 to outshine the great James Anderson and Stuart Broad.

Stephen added: “The school is exceptionally proud of Matthew and we’re lucky to have other students like Jordan Pickford who have gone on to successful sporting careers.

“Durham County Cricket Club should also be commended for their outstanding work and I’m sure they are extremely proud of Matthew too. It’s brilliant that he has come from grassroots cricket at Washington – it is a tremendous achievement.”

England's Matthew Potts leaps to catch a ball after bowling during the second day of the test match between England and New Zealand at Lord's cricket ground in London, Friday, June 3, 2022. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)

Following Friday’s match Matthew said: “Yes, it was a rollercoaster. We’ve kind of had an eventful day, but we’ve come to entertain, that’s our first and foremost thing.

“I think we’re going to throw our punches. Personally I think it’s very, very entertaining and I think it’s what we all want to see. We want to exchange blows, and if they throw us two we’ll throw them four.”