Sonny discusses his rapid rise

Sonny Baker signed his first professional contract last week.

The 18-year-old, who hails from Torquay where he plays his club cricket, put pen to paper on a two-year deal after impressing in this year’s Royal London Cup.

He took 10 wickets in the competition, with a best of three for 46 against Derbyshire.

We caught up with the young paceman this week to discuss his rapid rise.

“Just over a year ago I wasn’t even on the Academy,” he said. “So, to get the opportunity in the Royal London Cup was great. Signing for Somerset is the sort of thing that you dream about and it’s something I’ve worked really hard for.

“We talk a lot about family here, and it’s not just empty words. Everyone has been so welcoming, and you can see how much it means to them to be playing for Somerset.”

As Sonny explained, it was something of a shock to be offered a contract.

“When Andy Hurry called me into his office, I thought it was just going to be a review. When he offered me a contract I couldn’t speak. It’s a moment that will stay with me for ever. It was a bit of a surprise, but hopefully we can keep going from here.”

Sonny has been quick to highlight the people who have supported him thus far.

“There’s so many people that I want to thank for helping me get to this point,” he said. “I’ve had a lot of coaching from Andrew Griffiths within the Somerset Pathway. He’s been working with me for a number of years now, and the support that he’s offered me has been unbelievable. I don’t just mean from a cricket aspect either. He’s always been there to talk to, and he was amazing during the lockdowns. That means so much to me.

“Devon have been really good to me too. Sandy Allen in particular has been really supportive throughout the Pathways. It’s great that there’s such a strong link between the Devon and Somerset Pathways.

“Being at school at King’s has also been really beneficial. Rob Woodman and Mr Lewis have really helped me with cricket, and Mr Shaw has really helped with the S&C element which tied in nicely with what James Always, the Pathway S&C Coach, was doing.

“Obviously, my parents have been ferrying me here, there and everywhere throughout all of this, and I love the character that my dad has instilled in me. That’s made a massive difference to my attitude in all things.

“More recently, Steve Kirby and the senior bowlers have been great and been really open to answering questions and things like that. I mentioned the family thing earlier and it’s so true. They’ve all been tremendously supportive, especially Jack Brooks. Just before we went out on the field for my debut, Brooksie came over, put his arm around me and said some things. That made a real difference.”

What now for Sonny Baker?

“I’ve had a little taste of First XI cricket and I’m desperate for more!”

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