Glamorgan legend Matthew Maynard speaks to Jo Harman and reflects on a record-breaking career.
BANGOR AND SMASH
President’s XI vs Chairman’s XI, Bangor | 1981
I was playing up in North Wales in Bangor and there was a chairman’s versus president’s end-of-season match. I’d never played an all-day game before and I got to lunch 20-odd not out. At lunch the guys had a couple of beers, I had a couple, I was only 15, and then went out and smacked a leg-spinner around and got a hundred. The leggie’s name was John Bell and he knew Colin Page [Kent’s director of youth coaching] very well. After that I got invited to a trial at Kent.
102 | Glamorgan v Yorkshire, County Championship, Swansea | 1985
It never really worked out at Kent and Alan Jones at Glamorgan got in contact and asked me to go for a trial. I was offered a contract and made my debut the next summer against Yorkshire. We were dead and buried in the game so it was one of those situations where all the pressure was off. I remember getting to my hundred by hitting three consecutive sixes off Phil Carrick. Geoff Boycott came in the dressing room afterwards, shook my hand and said, ‘Oh, well played lad’.
DOWNTON AND OUT
3 & 10 | England v West Indies, 5th Test, The Oval | 1988
It wasn’t a great experience for me if I’m honest. My first England cap had P.R.D on it – it was an old reject from Paul Downton – and it was a real frosty environment, every man for himself. It was the last match of the series against West Indies, who had already won it, and I don’t know how much hunger there was from the England players to do well. The way the selectors operated it was very much the case that if you didn’t succeed early on, then you’re out. I found out a few days later that I’d been dropped for the next Test against Sri Lanka. It wasn’t really a surprise.
SUNSHINE ON NEATH
132 & 36 | Glamorgan v Australians, Tour Match, Neath | 1993
There was a lot of friction in that match, huge amounts. We had a real fight about us. That was Viv Richards’ influence – it made us a tougher unit. I caught Allan Border one- handed on the first morning and that gave me a bit of confidence and the next day I think I scored 120 in a session. I remember Steve Waugh giving me a bit of a blast after the game, saying ‘You should have got more, you could have had us!’ It was a great occasion: a good game, played in front of a decent crowd. We very much saw it as Wales v Australia.
20 & 9 | England v Australia, 6th Test, The Oval | 1993
I got recalled for the fifth Test at Edgbaston. My daughter was born at 3.50am on the morning of the first day and after not much kip I got nought. I had a duck and a daughter on the same day! In the first innings at the Oval I felt really good, I was seeing it nicely and then Warne bowled me this ball, and it just did me totally. It was his flipper but he hadn’t bowled it in two-and-a-half hours, or in the warm-up match at Neath, and I didn’t know what this thing was. I’d never seen that type of ball before. I left it: bowled. But we won the match and it was a great experience.
WAY OF THE DRAGON
The last game of Viv Richards’ career, first against second in the league, final game of the season, winner takes all. Loads of Welsh fans came down and Hugh Morris did a very clever thing and let Viv lead the team out – the crowd all round the ground gave a massive round of applause. Viv played an amazing knock [46* in a six-wicket win] and was very emotional at the end. He said when he came to the club he wanted to help us win a trophy and it was great he could finish his career in such a way. The man had so much passion for the game.
BIT OF NEEDLE
35 & 0 | West Indies v England, 1st Test, Kingston | 1994
I got my best Test score in the first innings and for the first time I actually felt at home in the middle. Then in the second dig I gloved off for nought and that was the end of my Test career. The one-day series that followed didn’t go great for me – I went diving and got urchin needles stuck in my hands but I wanted to continue playing so I just carried on and did that thing you’re supposed to do when you pee on your hands. I never fulfilled my promise at that level and I’m not sure why because I enjoyed big moments in games, I enjoyed being a player who could win games. I had done that quite regularly for Glamorgan and it was disappointing that I never transferred it onto the international stage.
TASTE OF VICTORY
214 & 68* | Glamorgan v Lancashire, County Championship, Swansea | 1996
I only scored three double-centuries in my career and the one against Lancashire was a bit special because my granddad was Lancastrian and I know he would have enjoyed that. I had one of my granddad’s favourite drinks, a gin and mixed, at the end of that game: a large gin, a measure of sweet martini and a measure of dry martini. I didn’t need too much rocking to sleep that night.
20* | Glamorgan v Warwickshire, County Championship, Cardiff | 1997
This was a big moment early in our Championship-winning season. We’d bowled out Warwickshire [for 151] and were on about 400-2 when Allan Donald cleaned up Hugh Morris on 233. Hugh was hit hard and carried off the pitch. I wanted to make a statement of intent so I didn’t declare until Donald had finished his spell. I felt it was important that Tony Cottey and myself saw him out, so as soon as he was off we declared. There are so many great memories from that season.
IN THE RUMS
114 & 13 | Glamorgan v Leicestershire, County Championship, Cardiff | 2004
I’d equalled Alan Jones and Hugh Morris’ record of 52 centuries for the club a month or so earlier and then broke it against Leicester. I remember Ottis [Gibson] was bowling and he knew what shot I was looking to play. He bowled me an inswinger and I just managed to whack him and bring up the century. Darren Thomas, our 12th man, brought a rum out to the middle for me but he stumbled on the way out and spilt it. He brought out another but the moment was kind of spoilt a bit! It meant a lot to break the record. Alan and Hugh are two guys I know very well; one of them is club president and the other is chief executive now and to be in their company was very special. To hold the record still means a lot.