Dunn on long white cloud nine
The youngest member of England Under-19’s World Cup squad, Matthew Dunn, is delighted simply to be in New Zealand for the competition.
A year ago the Surrey youngster, who will be 17 years and 255 days old when the tournament begins on January 15, had all but ruled out his participation.
“Last winter I was coming back from injury so I was working hard,” Dunn told ECBtv. “If you told me that I was going to be in the Under-19s going to the World Cup, I wouldn’t have believed it.”
“It’s just amazing to be involved here because everything has taken such huge steps in a short amount of time. It’s just brilliant to be involved.”
Such has been Dunn’s recovery, he has had to balance his international commitments with his final year of school.
A tourist in Bangladesh in October and early November, he had to take A-Level work with him while for many of his team-mates studying was a thing of the past.
“I’ve been working close with my county because obviously I went away to Bangladesh for a month, which again I had to take a shed-load of work out with me and try and get through as much as I can,” revealed Dunn, who has been supported by ECB Elite Player Development manager John Abrahams.
“I have been working closely with John Abrahams who has been linking with my county with lifestyle coaches, who have all been really helpful.
“My school, Bearwood, have been brilliant about it, giving me work when I need it and just trying to link in with my cricket and having cricket as my main priority.”
Dunn admitted many of his friends are only just beginning to appreciate the significance of his inclusion in the 15-strong squad.
However, the left-handed batsman and right-arm medium-pacer acknowledged the ample support he has received from them.
“They’re all very happy. Some of them don’t really understand the level I’m at, or they’ve still just understood it, but they’re all so supportive and so happy for me. It’s great to just have people like that behind you.”