MATTHEW FISHER, a maths A-level student, revealed that he was asked by one wag following his Twenty20 debut last Friday: “What’s 22 divided by five?”
The question was pertinent, for Fisher had just taken 5-22 from 3.2 overs for Yorkshire against Derbyshire at Headingley.
It was Yorkshire’s third-best figures in the format and laid the foundation for a seven-wicket win.
Small wonder that Fisher, 17, who is also studying PE and psychology, was delighted with a display that left him with the remarkable bowling average of 4.4.
As he prepared for Yorkshire’s second game in the 14-match group stage against Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge tonight (6.30pm start), pace bowler Fisher reflected on an astonishing start to his T20 career.
“It was pretty unbelievable really,” laughed Fisher, who is currently unavailable for County Championship cricket due to taking his exams.
“It was great to play under the floodlights and in front of a bumper crowd, and I just tried to hit my lines and lengths and it went from there.
“I told the umpire when we were coming off, ‘Can you pinch me because I think I’m dreaming’.
“Sometimes, you’re going to have your day; sometimes, you’re not, and I know I could bowl like that next time and go for 50 in four overs.”
Fisher will be hoping that does not prove to be the case at Trent Bridge, where Yorkshire face a team who have traditionally had the wood over them in T20.
Yorkshire have lost their last four T20 games against Nottinghamshire and seven of the last eight completed T20 matches between the sides.
“Notts are a tough side,” said Fisher. “They’ve got a serious squad and a lot of depth. It’s going to be hard, but I’m sure we’ll go there with good confidence and, hopefully, entertain the crowd again. We want to keep this good start going.”
Yorkshire’s prospects are boosted by the arrival of Australian batsman Glenn Maxwell, who makes his White Rose debut.
Nottinghamshire are without England batsman Alex Hales, who is on Indian Premier League duty after scoring 86 not out – including six successive sixes, albeit not in the same over – in last week’s triumph over Warwickshire, also at Trent Bridge.
Fisher, who made his first-class debut at Trent Bridge last month, is simply happy to be playing at present and is grateful to first-team coach Jason Gillespie.
“I hadn’t expected to play Championship or T20 cricket, but Dizzy (Gillespie) has shown the faith and the lads have been great and welcoming,” said Fisher.
“It’s a very tough side to get into – the England players have just come back – and Dizzy has just told me to enjoy it and have fun.”
Martyn Moxon, Yorkshire’s director of cricket, is delighted with Fisher’s attitude.
“He is very mature for his years,” said Moxon. “His skill level is exceptional really for the age that he is.
“He is one of those lads who learns very quickly and kind of knows what he needs to do. He’s a diamond.”
Yorkshire (from): Bairstow, Brooks, Bresnan, Fisher, Gale (captain), Hodd, Leaning, Lees, Maxwell, Patterson, Plunkett, Pyrah, Rashid, Rhodes.