Surreal is how Lloyd Paternott described his first experience of first-class cricket but the 22-year-old certainly wasn’t overawed by the experience.
Paternott is representing Oxford MCCU, a team made up of Oxford University and Oxford Brookes University students, in first-class matches against Nottinghamshire and Warwickshire.
Paternott, from Abbots Langley, was selected for the contest against Nottinghamshire and didn’t disappoint.
Up against former England players Ajmal Shazad, Chris Read and Samit Patel, Paternott scored a half-century in his first innings. He was comfortably Oxford’s stand-out performer with the bat as the side were dismissed for 102.
“I am really glad that I’ve been rewarded with the opportunity to play and have absolutely loved every second of this match,” Paternott said after the first day of play.
“It was very surreal in the beginning but I have had a big smile throughout.
“I thought I would be nervous but I’ve been enjoying it too much to think about it. That meant nerves didn’t really alter my performance.
“So I think I have stepped up to the occasion and am delighted to have hit a 50 off 172 balls.
“Bar three balls, I batted for the whole of our innings.”
At the time of going to press, Nottinghamshire were on course to clinch a comfortable win.
Paternott wasn’t able to replicate his success from the first innings and was dismissed for seven runs after being bowled by Luke Fletcher.
Paternott, who started playing cricket at the age of 11 at Radlett Cricket Club, is likely to come up against Jonathan Trott when the Oxford side take on Warwickshire on Monday.
When asked what it is like to come up against England players such as Trott, who played in the Ashes series in Australia, Paternott said: “When you’re playing against England players like Shazad, Read and Patel you just want to impress them.
“You want to prove to them and everyone else that you are able to play at that level.”