Listen to Sedbergh School director of cricket Martin Speight talk about Matthew Revis, and it quickly becomes apparent that the fledgling all-rounder absolutely loves a contest.
 
Revis debuted for Yorkshire in the penultimate game of the 2019 season, an LV= Insurance County Championship fixture against Kent at Headingley when he played as a 17-year-old opening batter.
 
Without a score of note and still completing his education at the Cumbrian boarding school, he batted valuable time against an attack led by veteran Darren Stevens – a man more than twice his age and who played against Speight during the latter’s Durham days in the late 1990s.
 
Since that Kent game, Revis has proved himself a very versatile batter – “he’s a proper player” is Speight’s assessment – who has batted as low as number nine this season.
 
He is also an extremely dangerous bowler and is now a fixture in Yorkshire’s first team across the various formats. He will play a significant role in the county’s bid for Royal London Cup glory, which starts tomorrow.
 
Revis is happy to dig in or attack with the bat and bowls his hit the pitch seamers with real aggression. 
 
But the best example which Speight gives to demonstrate the now 20-year-old’s desire to get in the contest came away from the cricket field.
 
“I’ll never forget in his first year here, when he was 16, they had a third or fourth team rugby fixture over at Newcastle in the middle of the week,” said Speight.
 
“A lot of lads were going, ‘I could do without this’. There were a few injuries, but he threw himself right into it and said, ‘Yep, I’d love to play’. 
 
“He played a bit and just enjoyed it, but he will throw himself into everything.
 
“He’s a very nice footballer, and he’s just a good athlete.”
 
Speight continued: “He worked really hard and played really hard.
 
“I’d say George (Hill) was the quietest of the three lads we had here.
 
“Matty is very funny and cheeky. He has a real sense of humour. He’s a delightful young man. All the teachers at Sedbergh loved him.”
 
Earlier this season, George Hill joked that Revis was like Andrew Flintoff in stature. In all seriousness, though, you can see a few similarities in their respective games.
 
But it is another England legend who Speight mentioned when talking about the Steeton-born star.
 
“It’s a really funny one how cricketers develop,” he said.
 
“Rev was a bit like George. When I first saw George, he was an all-rounder who Yorkshire said was a bowler first who could bat a bit. I said, ‘No, no, no, he’s a batter who could bowl a bit’.
 
“It was only when George was 15 – he used to bat 11 and open the bowling for Yorkshire Under 15s – that he got a chance and moved up the order.
 
“And Rev came to Sedbergh as an opening batter who didn’t bowl.
 
“But I said, ‘Look, you’re 6ft 3’, you’re going to chuffing well bowl’.
 
“He said, ‘I bowl a bit at my club’. So we continued to work really hard on his batting, which has improved a massive amount, but also on his bowling.
 
“He’s another lad who, like Harry Brook, came to the school and benefitted from training every day and playing on a really good pitch, training all year round and in the gym as well.
 
“But we got him into bowling. And within six months, he was opening the bowling for us and did so for two years.
 
“If you look at him now, he’s a real handful with the ball, especially on the right pitch.
 
“He’s a bit like Stuart Broad in many ways. Stuart didn’t bowl when he was 16 and was an opening batter like his father (Chris). And his bowling developed late. Look at him now.”
 
Speight added: “Rev is a very accomplished batter. He’s a very, very good player. For a tall man, he’s good against the short ball and hooks and cuts well. 
 
“He’s certainly better than a number nine, but look at the strength Yorkshire have with the bat. 
 
“I think he’s a genuine all-rounder who has also got buckets for hands, which helps.”

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