England v Australia: Boyd Rankin reveals Ashes aspirations
England v Australia: Boyd Rankin says he hopes to impress in the remaining ODIs and book his place in the squad for the Ashes
Boyd Rankin hopes a good showing against Australia in the current one-day international series will propel him into England’s Ashes plans this winter Down Under.
The 29-year-old Irish-born fast bowler has made some tough career choices off the pitch, by quitting playing for his native country, to fuel his Test aspirations.
But he his hoping his time with Ireland will make him the obvious option when the selectors sit down to decide this winter’s Test squad.
“I have had quite a bit of experience with Ireland in terms of World Cup which helps whenever you come into this environment,” said Rankin, who was part of England’s side which suffered a 88-run loss to Australia on Sunday.
“I suppose with myself and Steve Finn in terms of the new bowlers it puts a bit of responsibility on me but I think I react well to that.
“When I was in Ireland I was the leader of their attack and I have done quite well when given the extra responsibility.”
Rankin was persuaded by his then-coach Ashley Giles at Warwickshire to commit to the county and England last year.
The 6ft 5ins quick promptly retired from playing for Ireland so he could concentrate on winning a Test place with England.
“These ODIs (against Australia) are a great chance to show what I can do. I am just trying to put a good show on and hopefully that would put me in good stead for the winter,” added Rankin, who played 37 ODIs for Ireland.
“I haven’t played in Australia before but I have heard really good things in terms of the pitches which should suit me.”
England’s coaches are known to be fond of Rankin’s height and bounce and it is likely with steady showings, like his performance in Manchester on Sunday, where he took 2-49 off his ten overs, he could easily make the plane for Australia.
Rankin is also keen to put his injury woes behind him, too.
“I have been set back over the last couple of years having picked up a few injuries which has set me back from where I wanted to be,” he added. “I have got over those injury worries now and it has enabled me to get a full season under my belt.”
“I’ve been smarter in terms of the things that I do,” he said. “It is probably the stuff that I have cut out that has helped me stay on the park.
“I was doing a lot of running, squatting and lunges and stuff like that – all on my feet. I have cut out a lot of that and doing more cycling and swimming and trying to take the force off my body.”