Young spinner Joe Flatt making a real impression at Swardeston

Young spinner Joe Flatt has made big strides since joining Swardeston from Acle. Picture: FAMILY

Young spinner Joe Flatt has made big strides since joining Swardeston from Acle. Picture: FAMILY - Credit: Archant

Young spinner Joe Flatt thought he might have to bide his time before breaking into the Swardeston first team - but he is already looking like a key man.

The 18-year-old left armer has been a revelation since stepping up from Norfolk Alliance Premier Division outfit Acle during the close season.

After making his East Anglian Premier League debut in Swardeston's second game of the season against Norwich, Flatt has been an ever present in the five match winning streak that has lifted Joe Gatting's side to the top of the table.

And he really took centre stage at Frinton last week, with a hat-trick sealing an impressive 172-run success.

The teenager started off by claiming the key scalp of skipper Michael Comber, who had made 54, inducing a false stroke that saw him caught at mid-off by Michael Eccles. That wicket came off the final ball of his fifth over, and he snapped up tailenders Harry Nightingale and Dan Carter with the first two deliveries of his sixth, with Nightingale being caught behind by Stephen Gray and Carter being trapped leg before.

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'The main thing was that we won the game and kept our good run going but it's always pleasing to get a hat-trick,' he said. 'I think I have had a few before in junior cricket but obviously it means a lot more when you take the wickets in the EAPL.

'I was pleased to get Michael Comber because he is a quality batsman. Then it was a question of getting the tailenders and I managed to find the edge before getting the last man lbw. When you are on a hat-trick you will always appeal if it hits the pads, but to be fair I think it was pretty plumb!'

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Flatt, who lives in Cringleford, started playing his cricket as a boy at Swardeston before moving on to Acle, where he broke into the first team in his early teens.

'Playing adult cricket at a young age certainly helped me and I enjoyed my time at Acle but I thought it was time to try my luck at a higher level,' said Flatt, who has taken 18 wickets so far at 17.22. 'I am really pleased with the way it has gone so far. I thought I would be starting in the seconds but I was given my chance in the first team and it has gone quite well. Now I just need to make sure I perform well enough to stay in.'

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