Kent paceman Ivan Thomas admitted he struggled to sleep after captain Sam Northeast told him last Wednesday that he was going to make his T20 debut in the NatWest T20 Blast South Group with Essex at Canterbury 24 hours later.
But the 23-year-old didn’t struggle when Northeast threw him the ball for the fifth over.
He trapped big-hitting New Zealand international Jesse Ryder leg before for 26 with his third ball.
Ryder, who had hammered Mitch Claydon for five consecutive fours in the previous over, was deceived by a slower ball.
Thomas’ impressive first over went for just one run, his second for only four before he finally finished his four overs with 1-22 including nine dot balls.
Although Thomas didn’t appear nervous on his big night, which ended with a six-wicket triumph for his side, he said he owed his housemate, opener Daniel Bell-Drummond, plenty of credit for that.
He said: “I was on such a high when Sam (Northeast) told me I was playing as I didn’t expect to play much white ball cricket this season – I just couldn’t get to sleep as I was so excited.
“I kept thinking about what I had to do over and over again and who I might be bowling to.
“I was still buzzing on the day of the match and Dan certainly calmed me down because I just couldn’t wait to get to the ground and get going.
“He (Bell-Drummond) did a great job and so did Mitch (Claydon) when I arrived at the ground. He kept making me laugh and that put me at ease.
"It was a night I will certainly never forget.”