Stuart Broad was doubtful for England’s game against New Zealand © AFP
Mar 21, 2014
Mercurial England pacer Stuart Broad is positive about his chances of being fit in time for his side’s ICC World T20 opener against New Zealand at Chittagong.
Broad who was in doubt for the tie after he suffered from tendonitis in his right knee has allayed fears of him not being up to mark for the showdown against the Kiwis and gave proof of it when he bowled at bristling pace in the warm-up game against India on Wednesday, reports ECB.co.uk.
The injury meant that Broad was forced to sit out of England’s T20 games against the West Indies and was a frustrated spectator during the 2-1 defeat against Darren Sammy’s men.
When queried about his inclusion for the tie against New Zealand, Broad replied: “I’m pretty confident, no, very confident of playing a part on Saturday and in the rest of the tournament. The knee has come up pretty well from the India game. That was quite a new position for me as a player, to have my first bowl and fitness test during a game.”
“But it actually gave me a lot of confidence having had 12 balls in the middle, because we know how different it is bowling in nets. It has been a long winter for me personally, with the amount of overs I’ve bowled, and these 10 days have just freshened me up so I can really come firing into this World Cup,” added Broad.
England despite being in the ‘easier’ Group 1 of the T20 main draw will still have their work cut out against the likes of New Zealand, Sri Lanka and South Africa and will also have the Netherlands to contend with in their last game after the minnows sensationally beat Ireland to qualify for the main stages.
“I think it’s well documented that, as an England side, we tend not to start overly well. That’s something that we’ve mentioned within the changing room, but it’s a non-negotiable here. With the way the tournament’s set up a lot of good teams are not going to make it to the semi-final, so you’ve got to put yourself up there as a front-runner to start with,” said Broad.
“We’ve played a lot against New Zealand in the past 14 months, we had a long spell over there and they came to us this summer, so we’ve got a lot of knowledge about their players but it will be about us as an England team adapting to the conditions here,” added Broad.
On questions of the match against Brendon McCullum’s side being played in damp conditions, Broad replied: “It looks quite obvious dew is going to play a part, so we’re practising with wet balls. We’re getting the spinners bowling with wet balls and fielding with wet balls. It’s not something you do very often – I can’t think I’ve ever done it.”
“But it’s something we have to take into consideration because if you go in with three spinners and they can’t bowl you’ve stuffed yourself a bit,” signed off Broad.