CLUB mentor Ian Booth led the praise as Swanage spinner Jem Warner’s remarkable seven-wicket haul for Dorset under-17s set up a trial with Somerset.
Warner, who has just turned 17, conceded just one run on his way to his show-stopping display which inspired the county to a 181-run triumph over the Isle of Wight.
As well as helping Dorset to success in Group 4B of the County Championship – a regional section of the national competition’s second tier – the Purbeck School student has also emerged as one of the Dorset League’s top wicket takers for Swanage this season.
Warner’s 26 club wickets have come at a miserly rate of 14.15 runs per dismissal, conceding just 3.17 runs per over.
And it was that model of consistency which, according to Swanage director of cricket Booth, brought about his chance to impress in the professional ranks with Somerset.
Booth told the Daily Echo: “It is not an exaggeration when I say Jem is the leading spin bowler on the county circuit at the moment.
“At 17, he is still learning the tools of his trade but he has some potent weapons in his armoury.
“Jem is a bright young man with impeccable manners and an even more impeccable appetite for the game. He is remarkably learned, someone who thinks deeply about cricket and is always willing to learn.
“Ultimately, his heady rise is due simply down to his love for the game and his commitment to hard work in the nets, bowling ball after ball, training his nervous system to consistently produce the control, pace, flight and spin that all decent spinners need.
“He has a great future in the game but, more importantly, he has a great future as a person. He is indeed a true gem.”
Warner acted as 12th man for Dorset’s senior side on the first day against Cornwall on Sunday and has been selected for the Dorset Leopards fixture against the Gloucester Academy on August 31.
Dorset under-17s coach Matt Keech added: “Jem has had a very good county season and a lot of our success has been down to his performances.
“He has always had talent but over the past two years the improvement in his consistency has been excellent.
“The way he attacked Isle of Wight was unbelievable and while he has been playing well for a while, that certainly opened the door for him (with Somerset).”