Image courtesy of: The Telegraph
There is “no doubt” in Tremlett’s mind that he is ready to represent England once again
England pace bowler Chris Tremlett has called on the national selectors to let them know that he is ready to make his Test comeback and feels that the Investec Ashes series against arch-rivals Australia will provide a perfect opportunity to let his actions do the talking.
However, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) are still unconvinced over whether Tremlett has fully recovered from his career-threatening back injury, which saw him have trouble getting out of bed on some days.
Tremlett last represented England in a Test match back in 2012 when the national team were humbled by Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates.
Tremlett flew home early during the series after sustaining the back injury and he even needed surgery to prolong his career.
However, just as Tremlett looked to be on the path back to international cricket, the injury bug struck again and he was forced to postpone his international comeback dreams for a while after undergoing knee surgery.
“If I was picked for a Test tomorrow I’d be confident,” Tremlett told ESPNcricinfo. “If you had asked me that three games into the season, my honest answer would have been that I’m not ready to play Test cricket. But now I have some games under my belt, I have my confidence back. I feel I’m ready now. I’ve no doubt.”
While Tremlett admitted that he struggled to get back into his natural bowling rhythm after returning to represent Surrey in domestic cricket, he also feels that he has been in top form over the past few months.
“My body found it tough for the first two or three games of the season,” Tremlett said. “The first few games weren’t that enjoyable as it was such hard work on my back and knees. I was still feeling it a bit.
“But I’m not far off my best now. Something clicked at Leeds. At Derby I took eight wickets and felt I bowled pretty well, but I felt better at Yorkshire. I ran in harder. I bowled 48 overs against Yorkshire and I was bowling as quickly in my last over as I was in my first. I’ve a lot my rhythm and a lot more trust in more body now.”
Tremlett played a crucial role in England’s Ashes victory in 2010-11, taking 17 wickets in three matches, and added that getting another shot to bring the coveted urn back home would be a huge “bonus” after all the pain and suffering he has battled through.
“I’d love to be back playing for England again,” Tremlett said. “That’s what motivates me when I train. It’s hard to top being at that level and playing in the Ashes while you’re in county cricket but it would be a bonus from the dark times I’ve had.
“I would look at it as a bonus if I played for England again. After lying in theatre rooms and being opened up by surgeons, I’m grateful to just come back and play cricket at all.
“I never thought it was over, but there were times when I thought I might struggle. There were times when I was in a lot of pain and I couldn’t get out of bed. So it’s nice to get through that, as other bowlers have, and it’s great to be playing and enjoying it.
“I’ve been trying not to think about England too much. I’m trying to relax, play for Surrey and not think too far ahead. If I keep doing the right things for Surrey, I’ll work my way back into the England team. But I do feel confident that I’m almost back to my best now.”