Big Bash ideal for Lumb’s England ambitions

Michael Lumb is hoping some eye-catching performances in next month’s Big Bash in Australia will spell a return to the international fold.

Lumb has featured in eight T20 matches for England and helped them win the ICC World Twenty20 in the West Indies last year.

But a series of injuries have disrupted his progress and forced the selectors to look beyond the South African-born left-hander.

Lumb, 31, who recently left Hampshire for Nottinghamshire, will compete in the Big Bash for Sydney Sixers. And he is mindful his new team-mates will not be the only ones monitoring his progress.

He said: “It’s an old cliché about going out and scoring some runs for your team first, but I feel that if I do that I can get back into the England set-up and really offer something.

“I obviously haven’t played any cricket since the injury and it’s amazing how quickly you fall off the radar. But it’s all about taking your opportunities.

“Hopefully the Big Bash will allow me to do that. Hopefully it will prick the ears of the selectors and they’ll see Michael Lumb scoring some runs.

“Playing for England is a very special thing and it means a lot to me. I’d love to get back into the team – be it in the T20 or with a one day call-up.”

Lumb’s muscular approach at the top of the order alongside Somerset’s Craig Kieswetter was a significant factor in England’s World Twenty20 success.

Ironically, it was Kieswetter who first put the kibosh on him when he broke his foot with a fierce drive during a County Championship match at Taunton in August 2010.

He returned to action for Hampshire again, only to be ruled out with further injury in July this year following an accident during a pre-match kick-about.

Now after deciding his future lies at Trent Bridge rather than the Rose Bowl, Lumb is conscious another opener – new team-mate Alex Hales – could too prove problematic to his own international ambitions.

He said: “I haven’t seen too much of Alex but from what I have he looks to be an exceptional talent who could go a long way.

“I’ve been injured and he’s come in and played the last few matches for England and he plays a very attacking game.

“There’s no doubt that we both want that opening role and I’ll be pushing him very hard to win it back. I just hope we can both be selected!”

Lumb believes the knowledge gained playing in tournaments like the Big Bash and IPL will benefit both him and his new Notts team-mates.

He is also keen that a return the ground where he hit his record first class score of 219 will help him prosper in all forms of the game.

He added: “Trent Bridge has a reputation for the ball swinging but I enjoy batting there and am really looking forward to playing again.

“I’d like to think my experience will help me in an anchor role for them in the longer games as well as the short ones.

“They are a county that are used to winning things and the challenge of living up to that is one I’m really up for next season.”

About Robin Hutchison

Robin Hutchison is a Midlands-based sports Journalist and PR consultant. He is a regular contributor to The Cricketer magazine and currently pens their monthly betting column. He also contributes articles to a number of national newspapers including The Sun, Daily Star, Sunday Mirror and Sunday Express and is the author of The Tinman: The Ted McMinn Story.
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