The CPL ‘is a chance for me to step up in the shortest form of the game’, says Vernon Philander

Image courtesy of: Zimbio

Philander has never played in the Caribbean before

South Africa pace maestro Vernon Philander believes the Caribbean Premier League (CPL) will allow him to “step up in the shortest form of the game” and earn himself a spot on the Proteas’ Twenty20 team.

Philander, who currently has 89 Test wickets from 16 Test matches, was one of the youngest and quickest players to reach the 50-wicket mark in the longest format, needing just seven Tests to do so.

As of right now, Philander has only represented South Africa in eight ODIs and seven Twenty20 Internationals.

“I have obviously not played a lot of white-ball cricket for South Africa,” he said. “This tournament is a chance for me to step up in the shortest form of the game and I am pretty excited about it.

“I back myself in the shorter formats and want the opportunity at international level so if I can put my name on the board then that is what I want to do.”

Philander, who has been playing county cricket for Kent, will now represent the Jamaica Tallawahs in the inaugural edition of the CPL, which will run from July 30 to August 24.

“I know the (Tallawahs) squad is linking up this week but I have got some more commitments with Kent ,” Philander said. “But the good thing is I am playing matches for Kent, including plenty of Twenty20 games, and there is no better practice than playing out in the middle.”

The 28-year-old added that he will have to learn to adapt to the Caribbean conditions as he has never played there before.

“The conditions will pose challenges and as I have not played in the West Indies before,” he said. “That is something I will have to get used to.

“It will be a case of getting used to the decks and bowling up front as quickly as possible.”

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