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Sam Billings aims for T20 World Cup and test spot in England after ‘deflated year’ so far | Cricket News


Sam Billings helped England win over Sri Lanka in the second T20 in their fifth game since January; A Kent player looking to make the T20 World Cup and fight for a test spot as he tries to bounce back from a “deflated year”, watch the T20 final from 2pm Saturday, Sky Sports Cricket

Last updated: 06/25/21 4:47 PM

England’s Sam Billings has big goals in all formats after admitting his year so far has “floundered”

England’s Sam Billings is aiming for a place in the T20 World Cup and bursts into the Test squad after a “deflated” year so far.

Billings’ 24-on-29 shot in England’s victory over Sri Lanka in Thursday’s second T20 international in Cardiff – in which he shared a crucial half-century partnership with Liam Livingstone – n was only his fifth round since January.

The 30-year-old only made one appearance on England’s White Balls tour of India and did not play for the Delhi Capitals in the Indian Premier League at all before the tournament was postponed due to of the coronavirus pandemic.

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Billings replaced Jos Buttler (calf) in the England XI and could now hold onto his spot for Saturday’s final T20, with Buttler’s injury ruling him out of this game as well as next week’s three-day internationals against the same opposition.

“It chickened out at times, I’ll be honest, playing no cricket and missing on all fronts so it was nice to play hard,” Billings said reflecting on Thursday’s game, in which his position with Livingstone rallied England 36-4 in a revised 103 chase following the rain.

“Any opportunity I get in an English jersey, I want to grab it. We know how difficult it is to get into this whiteball squad – the depth of whiteball cricket hitters in this country is phenomenal.

Best of second T20 action between England and Sri Lanka, which the hosts won by five wickets on DLS

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Best of second T20 action between England and Sri Lanka, which the hosts won by five wickets on DLS

Best of second T20 action between England and Sri Lanka, which the hosts won by five wickets on DLS

“Whenever opportunities arise, I have to take them. It was not the best [on Thursday] but it was just doing the work for the team.

“In the past, I would have been there and tried more to put on a show, to try to make an impression even more.

“Now it’s just about getting the job done and winning cricket matches for the team, no matter how you do it. That’s more of my goal.”

Billings missed England’s 2019 World Cup triumph at over 50 due to a dislocated shoulder, but is now keen to assert his claims for inclusion in the 20-year-old version in October and November.

Billings turned 29 and shared a vital half-century position with Liam Livingstone during Thursday's clash with Sri Lanka

Billings turned 29 and shared a vital half-century position with Liam Livingstone during Thursday’s clash with Sri Lanka

“You want to be in a World Cup. Of course I want to be in it, but I’m very careful not to look too far.

“A lot can change in six months and we’ll take it step by step. As cliché as it sounds, looking too far ahead is dangerous. The competition within the team is phenomenal, so we’ll just have to wait and watch. . “

The Kent player was also called up to the England test squad for the New Zealand series after Ben Foakes suffered a hamstring injury with Buttler and Jonny Bairstow rested after their stints in the ‘IPL with Rajasthan Royals and Sunrisers Hyderabad respectively.

Billings didn’t get a game at the end with Gloucestershire’s James Bracey receiving the gloves against the Black Caps but loved being on the red ball side and can’t wait to hear more.

“It was awesome. I really loved being around that bubble. It was really interesting. It’s a very different atmosphere than Team for a Day,” added Billings, who also said that he was “energetic enough” to return to action early with Kent. and not take an extended break after returning from IPL.

Billings says his wicket is good enough for tryout cricket

Billings says his wicket is good enough for tryout cricket

“I really wanted to play of course. You have to be in and around to potentially have an opportunity and who knows that opportunity might present itself.

“I have been a wicket keeper since I was 13. I have guarded a lot in first class cricket and in all formats of play.

“Probably because of my training I’ve been considered a batsman and outfielder lately. I’m a wicket keeper first and foremost. I love the wicket keeper and will continue to try to push my case. with gloves too. “

Watch the third and final T20 between England and Sri Lanka, at the Hampshire Bowl in Southampton, live on Sky Sports Cricket and Sky Sports Main Event from 2pm Saturday.





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