Yorkshire and England fast bowler Liam Plunkett has revealed that words from Geoff Boycott led to him rediscovering his love for the game which has resulted in an England call-up after an exile of seven years.
The 29 year old, who returned match figures of 2-155 on his return at Lords, says that the Yorkshire legend gave him some advice which has stuck with him.
He said: “I met Boycott when I first signed and he just said ‘don’t think, just bowl’ and walked off, I don’t think I’ve spoken to him since! But it makes sense now to be honest.”
Boycott’s words have certainly rung true with Plunkett, who has returned the international fold a much more hostile and potent bowler than seven years ago after reviving his career since moving to Yorkshire at the start of the 2013 season.
The all-rounder said: “I think they’ve brought me in to bowl quick and to be aggressive and I love that role and as soon as I got the clarity to do that, that’s what works so well at Yorkshire.
“Dizzy says just run in and bowl quick and I did that, I backed myself and bowl good areas and as soon as I did that I picked up my wickets”.
However despite receiving a call-up to signal the start of a much heralded ‘new era’ for English cricket, Plunkett revealed that although he was happy with his performance there was a part of him that think it could have been better.
“You always want to do better. I would have loved to get a few more wickets but I was happy with my performance.
“I felt whenever I was asked to bowl I did a good job but you always step away and wish you’d done more, but as corny as it sounds it’s nice to be there and to be involved,” he told us.
The Middlesbrough-born man is expected to be named in the England side to face Sri Lanka on Friday at Headingley and it will mean that little bit more to him.
“It is my home ground now, yeah I keep forgetting. I’ve played here once before against the West Indies in the last series I played in and when I was a youngster I watched my first test here but it will be great for northern people like myself to come along and cheer.
“It’s a good atmosphere and I’ll be excited if I play.”
Plunkett (if selected) will be joined by batsmen Joe Root and Gary Ballance in the England side, who will be hoping to beat Sri Lanka to wrap up the first series win under the new management structure.
Best Test Match Bowling Figures in an innings by a Yorkshire bowler at Headingley.
FS Trueman 15.5 5 30 6 1.89 England v Australia 6 Jul 1961
D Gough 23.0 6 42 6 1.82 England v South Africa 6 Aug 1998
R Illingworth 51.0 22 87 6 1.70 England v Australia 25 Jul 1968
WE Bowes 50.0 13 142 6 2.84 England v Australia 20 Jul 1934
Best Test Match Bowling Figures in a match by a Yorkshire bowler at Headingley.
FS Trueman 37.5 10 88 11 2.32 England v Australia 6 Jul 1961
D Gough 47.3 13 100 9 2.10 England v South Africa 6 Aug 1998
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