Overton wants to repay England faith

“My pace is up there with what it has ever been, but I don’t consider myself simply a fast bowler. At my best I do get the ball to swing and that is an important asset to develop”

Last Updated: 18/06/20 9:25am

Jamie Overton has been named in England's 30-man red-ball training group ahead of the Test series against West Indies
Jamie Overton has been named in England’s 30-man red-ball training group ahead of the Test series against West Indies

Uncapped paceman Jamie Overton wants to repay England’s faith after inching closer to a Test debut by being named in a 30-man training group ahead of the series against West Indies.

Overton’s career has been best by injuries, limiting the 26-year-old to 154 first-team games compared to his twin brother and fellow seamer Craig’s 202 appearances, five of which have come for England.

Somerset star Overton knows he must impress at The Ageas Bowl next week, though, with England’s party to be whittled down to a smaller Test squad after an intra-team practice match ahead of the first Test against West Indies at the same venue from July 8.

“The England selectors have stood by me and it’s time I rewarded their faith,” Overton – who has been called up to white-ball squads before without making his debut – told the ECB Reporters Network. “Hopefully, the chance to do so may not be far away.

Jamie (right) would love to play in the same Test side as twin brother Craig (left)
Jamie (right) would love to play in the same Test side as twin brother Craig (left)

“You never expect selection for England squads and, while I was hopeful of making the 30, it is still a great boost for me at an important time.

“The squad will be reduced again before the Test against West Indies so my next objective is to impress during the training camp.

“Craig and I have played in the same team together since we were kids and the ambition has always been to do so for England.”

Overton, who underwent ankle surgery at the backend of last season, says he has been pleased with his performances since returning to training and wants to prove he can swing the ball as well as bowl at express pace.

“It was necessary to take things steadily on returning to training after such a long break from cricket. But the ball has been coming out really well in the nets,” said the fast bowler.

Overton: 'It was necessary to take things steadily on returning to training after such a long break but the ball has been coming out really well in the nets'
Overton: ‘It was necessary to take things steadily on returning to training after such a long break but the ball has been coming out really well in the nets’

“I have made a small adjustment to my action to help my alignment, which should benefit me in all formats of the game and enable me to swing the ball more.

“My pace is up there with what it has ever been, but I don’t consider myself simply a fast bowler. At my best I do get the ball to swing and that is an important asset to develop.”

Overton accompanied brother Craig on England Lions’ unbeaten tour of Australia over the winter and although he did not play a game, he says he took plenty from the experience.

“That was so important. Just to be training on grass, rather than indoors, was a huge help and the ankle has been fine for a while now,” added Jamie.

“There was even talk that I might play in the last game of the tour. I felt fit enough to do so, but in the end it wasn’t considered worth the risk.

“Now my body feels good and I reckon I am overdue a change of fortune with injuries. The fitness guys at Somerset, Jamie Thorpe and Joel Tratt, have been brilliant and I owe them a lot.”

Source : Sky Sports