Things are going pretty well for David Willey at present, and hopefully there are plenty more good things to follow for Yorkshire’s Vitality Blast captain.
Willey has just completed a month on England duty after a year away from international cricket, claiming 13 wickets in seven one-day and T20 internationals.
During that time the all-rounder was presented with his 50th ODI cap by his father Peter, describing it as a “very special moment”.
The 31-year-old claimed the player of the series award in the ODI series against Sri Lanka, taking 10 wickets.
And, to top it off, Willey said: “The lads back at Yorkshire got that quarter-final place in the Blast as well. It has definitely been a good few weeks all in all.”
But it doesn’t have to stop there.
Of course, a Yorkshire victory in the Blast quarter-final against Sussex at Durham on August 24 is central to that, as would be selection for England’s World T20 squad in October.
The current target, however, is success in the new Hundred competition with the Emerald Headingley based Northern Superchargers.
Willey has linked up with the Superchargers ahead of Saturday’s opening game against Jonny Bairstow’s Welsh Fire side at Headingley (6.30pm).
“Getting that call-up back with England was lovely,” he said.
“I wasn’t sure whether my time was done. So to play and to perform on top of that was even better.
“It was lovely to get my cap from my old man. We have a few disputes when it comes to cricket, but I have a lot to thank him for. It was very special moment.”
Willey, one of seven White Rose players in the Superchargers squad, continued: “I’m really looking forward to the Hundred.
“It’s a shortened version of T20, faster paced. It should be very exciting.”
Willey played an intra-squad trial game at Headingley on Wednesday morning, just 12 hours after finishing England’s T20 international against Pakistan at Old Trafford.
He was thrown straight into the action, bowling 10 balls on the reel from one end – one of the competition’s new innovations.
“I was very keen to have a run out and get used to some of the rules,” he said.
“We weren’t sure whether it would be closer to T10 or T20 cricket. So it’s been about finding that balance this week.
“Can you bowl 10 balls on the bounce as a bowler? And also, how is it as a batter?
“I think if it’s swinging or you’ve got a wicket, you can bowl 10.
“When I did it on Wednesday, it didn’t swing and there was no wicket. It made that second five balls very hard.
“I think potentially spin could be the way to get through it, particularly Adil (Rashid) or Mujeeb (ur Rahman) for us. They might be ones to thrive.”
In the second of two innings on Wednesday, the total was 187: “We were very happy with that,” he continued.
“I think it is more T20. You effectively just take an extra dot an over pretty much. Your mindset as a batter should definitely be more T20.
“Potentially, as a bowler, you will find it easier than T20 cricket with there only being five balls. Often in T20, you find it quite hard to get out of your over. You see the last ball go for four so often in T20.”
So, what is it about this new competition that appeals the most to Willey?
“I think it’s the fact every game is on TV,” he said. “Look at how the Big Bash goes when every game is televised. People can really follow the competition.
“When there are so many games being played in the Blast and they’re not on TV, the tables can move around a bit and you’re not quite sure what the meaning of each game is.
“With this, you can follow every game.
“There will be some big crowds, and the young lads can gain more experience in more bigger games. That can only be good for everyone.”
England superstar Ben Stokes will be available for the opening two games before Test duty, while the Superchargers have a trio of overseas players at their disposal in Afghanistan mystery spinner Mujeeb Ur Rahman, South African batsman Faf du Plessis as captain and Australian batsman Chris Lynn.
The latter could be worth the entry fee alone!
But Saturday will see a home hero line up for the opposition in Welsh Fire captain Jonny Bairstow.
“Jonny’s a terrific player, so hopefully it swings and I can hit him on his shin in that first five balls!” added Willey with a smile that we hope lasts for a good few months yet.