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Kings of Anglia Issue 9 Magazine Offer

Ex-Suffolk schoolboys resume rivalry on international stage at England’s cricketers take on New Zealand

PUBLISHED: 17:35 23 June 2015

New Zealand's Matt Henry in bowling action against England during day three of the first Investec Test Match at Lord's, London

New Zealand's Matt Henry in bowling action against England during day three of the first Investec Test Match at Lord's, London

PA Wire/Press Association Images

Tonight, former Suffolk schoolboys Reece Topley and Matt Henry will go head-to-head in an international Twenty20 match between England and New Zealand at Old Trafford.

It’s a match-up that has sparked memories of the duo’s involvement in a ‘humdinger’ of a derby between Royal Hospital School and St Joseph’s College back in 2010.

A 16-year-old Topley was playing for the Holbrook hosts that day, while 
18-year-old Henry – over from New Zealand on a one-year scholarship at the time – was playing for the visitors.

It was clear at the time that the duo were destined for big things. Towering left-arm seamer Topley claimed five wickets, while Henry – although unable to claim any scalps – bowled with maturity, his short balls meaning he conceded just 32 runs off eight tight overs.

“Anyone involved with those two schools will remember that game well,” said Don Topley, father of Reece and cricket coach at RHS in Holbrook.

“RHS versus St Jo’s has always been quite an intense local derby – it’s game neither team likes losing.

“That particular game was a real humdinger. Matt Henry already had a high profile as a Kiwi over on a scholarship, while there were several local lads already making a name for themselves.

“We won the toss and were bowled out for 166, then Reece took the first four wickets as they were reduced to 57 for six.

“They were at 95 for nine at one stage, but then came a good last wicket stand before Reece claimed his fifth wicket to secure RHS a 31-run win.

“We all came away from that match knowing that we’d witnessed a few stars in the making.

“Reece and Matt have obviously gone on to become international 
players, while Matthew Hunn is also a professional with Kent.”

Henry, 23, made his New Zealand T20 debut in December last year, with One Day debut coming a month later.

He was called up as replacement at the semi-finals stage of the World Cup in Australia and went on to feature in the final, at the MCG, against the hosts.

Then came a dream Test debut, against England at Lord’s last month, when he finished with six wickets in a memorable opening match.

Ipswich-born Topley – alongside Hampshire batsman James Vince, Kent wicket-keeper/batsmen Sam Billings, Northants all-rounder David Willey and Durham seamer Mark Wood – was one of five uncapped players named in England’s squad for tonight’s one-off game at Old Trafford.

The 21-year-old has long been in the mind of England selectors, having trained with the first team aged 15, but has finally made his breakthrough thanks to the benefits of an injury-free winter.

Essex have been treating the youngster with kid gloves this summer, head coach Paul Grayson making the decision to limit his involvement in the LV= County Championship, and the result has been some impressive form in the short formats of the game.

Essex may be struggling in all formats of the game, but Topley has strengthened his reputation with some prize wickets – including the likes of Kumar Sangakkar (Surrey) and Chris Gayle (Somerset).

Shrewsbury Town chief executive Brian Caldwell has ruled out Paul Hurst returning to the club following his recent sacking by Ipswich Town.

More than 500 tickets have been donated for Ipswich Town’s home game against West Brom next Friday evening after one small act of kindness gained online momentum.

Toto Nsiala may currently find himself on the fringes of the Ipswich Town first-team but the central defender continues to make an impact off the field each and every week.

We’ve ranked the home kits of all 24 Championship teams. So who comes out on top?

Andre Dozzell has revealed his frustration as his return to action stalled earlier in the season but the teenager is now hungry for minutes on the field after returning to the first-team picture.

In past columns I have talked about a divide between athletes that earn large amounts of money, and those that do not, and how there is a movement in Ipswich to bring this sporting diversity together.

ANDY WARREN spoke to Ipswich Town No.2 Stuart Taylor about his journey from cleaning Paul Lambert’s boots at St Mirren to assisting him at Portman Road.

Striker Kayden Jackson scored a hat-trick as Ipswich Town defeated QPR 5-1 in a behind-closed-doors friendly at Playford Road this afternoon.

Trevoh Chalobah has been training with the full England squad today ahead of the Three Lions’ clash with the United States tomorrow night.

Jordan Graham is training with Oxford United after being given permission to move on by Ipswich Town.

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