Yorkshire spinner in squad for Australia showdown
Yorkshire’s Adil Rashid will be swapping the white rose of Yorkshire for the three lions of England this month after receiving his first Ashes call up ahead of the opening test.
The 27-year-old will walk out at the SSE SWALEC stadium in Cardiff on Wednesday 8th July, as he joins the national side in what will be his first Ashes experience.
The leg-spinner has never competed in the historic contest before and says he first learnt of his call up as he left the field following Yorkshire’s emphatic victory over Durham.
“I found out as soon as I got off the field,” he said. “Dizzy (Jason Gillespie) was the first one who told me.
“He said ‘well done on your selection’. I checked my phone and had a message from Mr Whitaker. I’m delighted, over the moon, and am looking forward to going there and seeing what happens.
“It is definitely a career highlight. It’s always a dream to play Test cricket for any youngster, especially to be part of an Ashes squad. I’m really looking forward to it. Hopefully I can do well.”
Rashid, who was part of Yorkshire’s innings victory, missed out on a pre-Ashes camp to Spain, but he believes helping Yorkshire progress to the top of the LV= County Championship table was more important.
“I was just told by Paul Farbrace to come here to Durham and get some overs under my belt and if selected for the squad, I’d be ready,” he added.
“It was good to get some overs under my belt, get into rhythm and bowl my tricks. I’ve never met Trevor Bayliss (England head coach), and I’m looking forward to meeting him and seeing how we get on.”
Rashid is a firm believer that he has matured both on and off the field over the past couple of years and is ready for the Test arena.
“I think now I’m a lot more relaxed, looking to spin the ball both ways and have fun,” added Rashid.
“I’m not really worried about going for runs. I look to attack and create chances and wickets. That’s all I’ve been thinking over the last two years.”
Rashid was previously selected for the national side during their tour of West Indies over the winter yet didn’t feature in any of the three Tests. More recently, he appeared in England’s 3-2 one-day series win over New Zealand this summer.
Trevor Bayliss said he called up the Bradford-born bowler for an alternative option on dry wickets.
“There has been some good weather around and it looks like being a dry summer,” he said.
“If we have Rashid there we have the option to play him.”
Rashid and the rest of the England party met up last weekend.