Image courtesy of: The Guardian
“He was very influential in me doing what I’ve done and getting the chance to play for England a few years on”
England batsman Michael Carberry has revealed that former Australia spin king “Shane Warne is basically the reason why I got a chance to play Test cricket”.
Carberry, who is currently on 153 not out against Australia A, credits Warne for helping him find his way after a couple of rough stints at Kent and Surrey brought him to Hampshire.
“Shane Warne is basically the reason why I got a chance to play Test cricket,” he said. “I was a young guy who was a little bit lost in county cricket, didn’t really get an opportunity. I came to Hampshire and from day one he made me feel very much at home. He gave me the backing I think any young player needs and allowed me to play a brand of cricket I wanted to play.
“He was very influential in me doing what I’ve done and getting the chance to play for England a few years on. The times I’ve caught up with him, he has always had very kind things to say about my game, I still keep in contact with him, even though he might be overseas. He’s always been a great friend to me.”
Carberry’s friendship with Warne even helped him through the darkest chapter of his life, when he was ruled out for a significant period of time due to a blood clot in his lung.
The blood clot not only forced Carberry to miss the 2010-11 Ashes series, but posed a serious threat to his cricketing career as well.
However, Carberry fought through the ailment and he is more determined than ever to make up for lost time.
“It’s been well documented that I have had some tough times off the field, but by the grace of God I’m here to enjoy what I’m doing now,” he said. “When things like that happen it gives you perspective on your cricket, maybe to relax more and try to enjoy the game for what it is, rather than as young players perhaps putting pressure on yourself to try and get where you want to get to. If you do the processes right you’ll get there.
“I came here with pretty much a blank canvas. I try to be flexible, to do whatever job is put in front of me for the team. If it’s to be opening great, if it’s to bat down the order even better. Nothing much was explained to me, I was just told ‘Carbs you’re going in with Cooky’ and that was good enough for me. I set my mind as any opener does to see off the new ball, which was going to be the biggest threat on that wicket, and then try to bat through the day.”
Speaking about Carberry, Australia A wicketkeeper Tim Paine admitted that the bowlers bowled too many short-pitched deliveries to him.
Paine added that the bowlers should have pitched the ball up as it resulted in Carberry nicking the ball numerous times through the gully region.
“We thought we were probably half a sniff around that gully region if we bowled the right length to him,” Paine said. “We just couldn’t get one to go to hand today, but he’s obviously a class player. He is opening the batting for England and they’re a very good side. If he does play in the Ashes he’ll be hard to get out, but there is an area there definitely: if you stack up your gully region I think at some point you’ll get a chance.”