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Kent's teenage seamer Hugh Bernard says more to come from him after three wickets on debut

By Alex Hoad

Teenage seamer Hugh Bernard says there is more to come from him after making his first team bow for Kent.

The 19-year-old Kent Academy scholar-of-the-year in 2014 and 2015 Kent League young player-of-the- year after heroics for Folkestone, claimed three wickets to help Kent on the way to a 10-wicket victory in their Specsavers County Championship, Division 2 clash with Glamorgan at Canterbury.

After impressing for England under-19s against Australia last year, the former Archbishop’s School, Canterbury, pupil signed his first professional deal last June before touring the sub-continent with the age-group side during the winter.

Hugh Bernard. Picture: Barry Goodwin
Hugh Bernard. Picture: Barry Goodwin

He channelled his disappointment at missing out on the under-19 World Cup squad in Sri Lanka into a strong showing in pre-season for Kent and has been named in the squad for the opening three games of the season.

He said: “It wasn’t too much of a surprise to be in the team this week as I think I have done pretty well in pre-season and I was in the squad for the opening Championship game at Worcester but it was washed-out.

“I did my ankle which meant I couldn’t play at Leicester but I got a call from Jimmy on Sunday basically saying ‘be ready because you’re in (the team)’.

“I was able to tell my captain at Folkestone, Andy Bray, who came up on the day to watch and I’ve had family here over the past couple of days which is nice. I’m proud to have made my debut.”

Bernard took 2-68 from 13 overs in the first innings and added 1-37 off nine in the second and he claimed: “I’ll take my figures for a first appearance. I got 14 runs too and hopefully that’s something else which I can get better at.”

He added: “There are a few of us younger guys who are all ultimately trying to get into the side and make a place our own. Ivan Thomas did well to start last season and Matt Hunn came in and did well later in the summer.

“I am only 19 and have plenty of time ahead of me but hopefully I can take the opportunity and continue to learn and improve.”

Bernard became the 17th Kent Academy graduate to play First Class cricket since 2003 and claimed his first scalp when he had Aneurin Donald hook straight to Sean Dickson at deep square leg.

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