Image courtesy of: Zimbio
England batsman Sam Billings has insisted that he is open to batting anywhere should it lead to him being included in the squad for the Champions Trophy in June.
Billings had been England’s go-to opener when Alex Hales was injured with a broken bone in his right hand. But, Hales made a statement on his return, smashing a magnificent 110 against the West Indies in Barbados.
With Hales and Jason Roy set to form England’s opening partnership for the Champions Trophy, Billings reiterated that he is willing to be demoted down the order.
“We’ve got a fantastic batting line-up, it’s up there as one of the best in the world at the moment,” he said. “So all I can do is try my best every time I go out with the bat, and hopefully score some runs.
“Historically for Kent, I haven’t opened the batting. It’s a pretty new role for me and I’m kind of learning on the job.
“The last few years I’ve normally batted in the middle order, and done well there, but at the end of the day I’ve got to offer as many options as I can to any selector, or team I play for around the world.
“It was a great team effort to win in the West Indies, and we’re now going into this summer’s Champions Trophy looking really good.
“As an individual, I’ve just got to keep plugging away, hopefully I’ll get some runs now in the IPL and then get another opportunity in the ODIs against Ireland in May.”
The 25-year-old has only played limited overs cricket thus far in his career, and since he is still young, the Kent native admitted that he still has hopes of representing his country in Test cricket.
“There is no doubt my game has progressed over the last year,” Billings said. “T20, as exciting as it it is, just keeps raising the skill level and when you rub shoulders with some of the best players in the world, you’re bound to pick up different things.
“But I’ve also still got a huge focus on four-day and Test cricket, that’s the aspiration going forward. Obviously, at this point in time, the IPL is the next thing on my radar and then the Champions Trophy. But at some point in the summer I’ll face a red ball and I’ll hopefully put my name in the hat for Test selection through weight of runs for Kent.
“Andrew Strauss played over 100 Test for England and only made his debut at 28, so I’ll always have the aspiration to play Test cricket for England, regardless of age.”