North Midd’s Hollman ‘thoroughly enjoyed’ England U19 experience

Luke Hollman bowling for North Middlesex (pic George Phillipou/TGS Photo)

Luke Hollman bowling for North Middlesex (pic George Phillipou/TGS Photo) - Credit: George Phillipou/TGS Photo

North Middlesex teenager Luke Hollman admitted he had thoroughly enjoyed his experience with the England Under-19s in recent years.

The Islington-born 19-year-old took a total of 27 wickets in Test, ODI and T20 matches, while also scoring 364 runs in all competitions.

And the all-rounder said he had learned plenty on and off the pitch during his two and a half years in the squad.

“My first tour was to South Africa in 2017. We had the likes of Tom Banton, Ethan Bamber, Harry Brook and Will Jacks, who are all going fairly well in county cricket and Tom playing for England now,” he told the Middlesex League podcast.

“I thoroughly enjoyed it. I learnt loads, had some fantastic coaches, travelled to some really amazing countries.

“The experience of the U19 World Cup was amazing as well, playing on TV. Two of our overseas from the previous season came down to watch Ethan and I in Queenstown and to see them there was quite amazing. We had our families and those to support us.

“I thoroughly enjoyed England Under-19s. I had some tough experiences, especially in Bangladesh, but I really enjoyed it.

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“We were there for a month, we couldn’t leave the hotel, we had highly strict security. We had blokes on our floor with AK47s protecting us!

“That was an interesting experience. We won the warm-up game, then lost every single game after, fairly convincingly as well. Two years later they won the U19 World Cup.”

Leg-spinner Hollman admitted he had few complaints about the outcome against Bangladesh, but revealed some unexpected truths about the pitches.

“They were probably a better team than us. We were quite young and new to that level, wheras they had three or four series behind them,” he added.

“Bangladesh is such a hard country to tour. The pitches the two Test matches was played, they weren’t dust bowls, they were heavily watered, green, flat pitches.

“They didn’t offer a huge amount of turn and using a red Kookaburra is never ideal on a flat on! But it was a hell of an experience and amazing. I thoroughly enjoyed it.”