Northants loan can help give Si­mon in­cen­tive to fill Test void

The Cricket Paper - - FIRST TEST - By Ross Law­son

WHEN it comes to Si­mon Ker­ri­gan’s in­ter­na­tional ca­reer, un­fin­ished busi­ness hardly scratches the sur­face of a man who still bears scars of his one and only Test match.

But make no mis­take, the Lan­cashire spin­ner is not some­one who is will­ing to keep star­ing at the past.

In­stead, the 28-year-old has cho­sen to switch to Northamp­ton­shire on loan for the rest of the sea­son, a move de­signed to reignite a ca­reer that some from the out­side fear has stalled.

But more than four years since his ill-fit­ting in­ter­na­tional bow against Aus­tralia, which saw him ship 53 runs in eight overs, Ker­ri­gan is adamant the form that got him there is not a fluke.

“I’m still an at­tack­ing spin­ner, noth­ing’s re­ally changed in that from five or six years ago, but I’ve also learnt more about be­ing the per­cent­age spin­ner,” he said.

“In­ter­na­tional cricket is still the am­bi­tion, at the mo­ment the fo­cus is about get­ting into the Northants side and then the Lan­cashire team and see­ing where that takes me.

“There is un­fin­ished busi­ness with Eng­land, I’ve learned so much from that ex­pe­ri­ence and I’m def­i­nitely bet­ter off for it, I was given the go and now I’ve had a chance to work through any tech­ni­cal and men­tal is­sues that I hadn’t even known ex­isted.

“It was good to get that, every day you’re learn­ing from them. I strug­gled in that Test and you think about your game plan, your men­tal ap­proaches and try and make sure you get your­self into the right state.”

This sea­son is un­likely to be one that will go down in his­tory for Ker­ri­gan, mak­ing just two Cham­pi­onship ap­pear­ances for the Red Rose with Stephen Parry and Matt Parkin­son ahead of him in the peck­ing or­der.

But with one year left to run on his con­tract, the onecounty man – born and raised in Pre­ston – is not one to cut his ties quite yet.

Af­ter all, this is still the same man who took 9-51 against Hamp­shire in 2011, while first-class cricket has yielded not only more than 300 wick­ets, but 20,000 de­liv­er­ies and ex­pe­ri­ence in abun­dance.

Still only 28, Ker­ri­gan is far from be­ing put out to pas­ture.

“It’s been a frus­trat­ing time for me this year, I’m grate­ful for Northants to giv­ing me that op­por­tu­nity and a chance to get some more game-time,” he added.

“The only way I’m get­ting back in that Lan­cashire side is by play­ing as much first­class cricket as I can on good pitches, that’s my aim and my fo­cus re­mains the same.

“It’s never nice be­ing out of the loop, but as a pro­fes­sional crick­eter that is some­thing you some­times have to deal with.

“Other play­ers are bat­tling for your place, we’ve got some qual­ity play­ers and I’ve al­ways said that you want to have other peo­ple there for com­pe­ti­tion. My aim is to make sure I get my­self back into a team that is cur­rently do­ing re­ally well.”

One Test won­der: Si­mon Ker­ri­gan bowl­ing in his only Test against Aus­tralia in 2013

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.