Never given up hope of playing for Australia again: James Faulkner
James Faulkner is keen on getting his international career back on track. (Getty Image)

Once a mainstay of the Australian limited-overs team, James Faulkner suddenly found him out of contention. Faulkner, Man of the Match in Australia’s 2015 World Cup triumph, following a drop in form, was omitted from the national side for the Champions Trophy and lost his Cricket Australia contract.

Faulkner returned for the limited-overs tour of India but hasn’t played a game for Australia since. He signed a two-year deal with Lancashire to acclimatise himself to the conditions in England. With the World Cup approximately eight months away, the 28-year-old is keen on getting his international career back on track and feels that his experience of playing in the country can get him his place back in the national set-up.

“I’ve never given up hope of playing for Australia again,” Faulkner told cricket.com.au. “I think I can still offer something and my experience of English conditions will hopefully carry some weight. But I know that counts for nothing unless I can have strong season for Tasmania and that is my goal.

Faulkner signalled his arrival in 2013 where his cameo propelled Australia to an unlikely win over India in Mohali. Since then, he had become an inseparable part of Australia’s set-up. Having picked up 10 wickets in the World Cup, Faulkner also played a vital role in Australia’s quarter-final run at the 2016 World Cup. With Australia taking a 0-5 beating at the hands of England earlier this year, the door might indeed be open for Faulkner to return.

“I’d love to be back here helping us retain our World Cup. Winning man of the match three years ago was a career highlight and I’d love to repeat it,” Faulkner said.

That said, Faulkner is currently focusing on the JLT Cup, in which he will be representing Tasmania after his wish of moving back to the club having spent seven years with Melbourne Stars was granted. Tasmania begin their campaign against Victoria, but Faulkner’s participation remains in doubt because of a calf injury he picked up during the Vitality Blast.

That however, was not the only recent injury he picked up. For the last two seasons, Faulkner has been troubled by his right knee which now, as per his admission, feels fine.

“I had a great seven years in Melbourne but it’s been great be back at home, surrounded by close friends and family,” Faulkner said. “You do begin to doubt yourself when things aren’t going right on the pitch. Fortunately, I am not shy of talking about things with teammates and other players.

“My knee feels as good as it ever has and I also have a great support network around me who help keep me going and that is something I am very lucky to have.”