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Matt Walker assists England Test training

Friday 10th June 2016

Men’s First Team

Kent’s recent prowess in white-ball cricket and upturn in Specsavers County Championship form has seemingly not gone unnoticed at the England and Wales Cricket Board.

Currently vying for promotion in four-day cricket, Kent Spitfires have also reached the knock-out stages of the Royal London One-Day Cup for the past two seasons as well as last year’s NatWest T20 Blast quarter final.

With Kent showing consistency in all formats, England’s management team have come to realise that Kent’s coaching structure are clearly getting something right.

With Jimmy Adams at the helm and his three trusted aides, former county stalwarts; Matthew Walker (assistant coach), Mark Ealham (seam-bowling coach), Min Patel (spin-bowling coach), Kent are now perceived as a team moving forward on the field as well as off it.

If more evidence were needed, Walker, who is also Kent’s batting coach, spent the early part of this week at Lord’s assisting the England squad ahead of the third Investec Test against Sri Lanka.

“It was a lovely surprise if I’m honest,” said a delighted Walker, talking from the Home of Cricket.

“I got a text message from Paul Farbrace (England assistant coach and former Kent coach) asking if I’d like to come up and help out with the build-up to the Test match.

“I know ‘Farbs’ well from his time with Kent, but it was a real honour to be asked all the same and I’m hugely grateful for the opportunity.”

Walker, who as a player scored two first-class centuries at Lord’s, added: “I’ve also been doing some work with the England Lions squad in recent months and, as a coach, it’s rewarding to be thought of in those circles and playing a small part in the international coaching shake-up.

“It’s good for me because I can pick up on all the latest training and coaching methods used at the top level, which I can then bring back into the coaching mix at Kent. But it’s also useful for the England players.

"They get to see a new face and hear a different voice, which helps to keep training fresher and more vibrant, which is what everyone wants.”