Surrey wicketkeeper-batsman Rory Joseph Burns is looking forward to making the most of the West Indies tour later this month to stake his claim for the Ashes 2019 spot to be played at home.
However, Burns, who is yet to impress at the international level with the bat, isn’t sure that he would cement his place in the national Test squad on the back of his show in the upcoming three-match Test series in West Indies. But the 28-year-old is hoping to tick some boxes in a bid to nail down an Ashes spot in the English side with his show in the Windies series, starting from January 23.
The left-hander made his Test debut in Sri Lanka in November last year, scoring 155 runs in three matches at an average of 25.83, feels big scores on the board can potentially earn a spot for him in the national side, but he really doesn’t want to put his all energy and focus into thinking “this is his big chance” to stake his claim for the Ashes squad.
Burns was quoted as saying by Daily Mail, “There’s definitely that opportunity. If you look at the last couple of years, no one has really been able to do that when it comes to the opening spots. This is a chance to do that although I am not sure I would assess it in terms of being the be all and end all to cement my place.”
The keeper continued, “If I go out there, play as well as I can, go through my processes and hopefully tick some boxes, I score the runs that potentially lead to retaining that place. But I won’t be putting all my energy and focus into thinking 'this is my big chance'. You have to take it game by game, day by day, and see where you get to.”
Meanwhile, Burns has been working with England batting coach Mark Ramprakash, saying: “They have warned me of tennis ball bounce and slightly slower-paced pitches. But it is not something you can properly judge until you experience it first hand because different people skin a cat in different ways. You have to find your own methods to combat what’s presented in front of you. You expect the wickets in the subcontinent to spin a lot and to do so quite early in the game.”
The Surrey captain continued, “Looking at how things have been in recent times in the Caribbean, though, it has tended to be more traditional, and the pitches break up further into the game rather than turning from day one. It’s a new challenge and something I will relish.”
Commenting on the English dressing room, Burns said, “There are a lot of good guys in that dressing room. As soon as you walk in, you feel that they want other people to succeed. They like people doing well and they’re a very easy bunch to fit in with because they’re so relaxed.”
He signed off by saying, “It means you can concentrate on taking care of your own business. With touring, you are away for a long period of time and one of the key factors if you want to be a successful team, is getting the environment right. You feel the sense of camaraderie straightaway.”
(With Daily Mail Inputs)