AUDIO: Ben Duckett wants his England place back and knows that only runs for Northamptonshire will get him back in the frame.So watch this space, he’s not done yet! After the successes of 2016 with Northamptonshire the 22-year-old cannot wait to get his teeth into a new English summer.
“Yeah, very excited,” Duckett said. “It’s obviously been a busy winter, but now, for me, it’s just about trying to find the right form going into the summer and I’m really looking forward to it.”
A repeat performance for Northamptonshire will see him knocking on the England door again.
“I’d take it and it was a good summer,” Duckett agree. “It’s in the past now so I’ve just got to try and remember what I did well last summer, my strengths and weaknesses and just try and replicate what I did. And if I can try and get near that, or match it, I will be very happy,”
Duckett picked up just about every player of the year award going after a stellar season domestically and when asked whether he’d had to buy a bigger house to fit them all in he laughed and said, “I’m actually looking to get a house but I usually just dump those at my Mum’s. She can look after them.”
While his Mum is polishing the trophies Duckett has been in and out of the England team. A star on the rise he was the bees knees after slaying domestic attacks throughout 2016, then a fifty against Bangladesh had pundits purring that he was exactly what England needed if they were to take the attack to India.
But Duckett won’t be the last to struggle against a top class India attack on home soil and he returns to his county with a point to prove.
“I’m obviously in a better place than I was at the start of last summer, but a lot of the stuff, for me, now is forgotten and I need to go out there and score as many runs as I can. At least I’m in a higher up place than I was last year, which is good, and all I’ve got to do is to try and score as many runs as I can and keep knocking on the door of the England squad.”
With Duckett out of the England XI he watched Keaton Jennings and Haseeb Hameed achieve success. Was that tough to watch? Was there a bit of envy?
“To be honest at the start I might have though that, but as soon as you see young guys doing well for England it’s hard to just [be envious]. I was so happy for them both,” Duckett said with real vigour. “Has was excellent and then for Keats to come in for a couple of games and play so well.
“So yes obviously, when you are fighting for the same place it is sometimes tough, but I was over the moon for how well they both did,”
And when England have the likes of Duckett waiting in the wings and desperate to impress, it can only be good for county cricket and for the England side?
“It’s just great for the country and even for the selectors,” Duckett agreed. “There are so many people knocking on that door. There are a couple of places up for grabs and probably 10 players fighting for them. So there are plenty of opportunities and I’ll just try and score as many runs as possible at the start of the year.”
As the editor of Cricket Badger he is intent on building the website to give quality coverage of the domestic game around the world.
James was the full-time Media Manager at Yorkshire County Cricket Club between 2007 and 2010.
James is a published author and a writer/video contributor to many cricket publications.
He's unsurprisingly a complete cricket badger!
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