Chris Woakes: The English all-rounder doesn’t mind missing the Lord’s Test only if he is given a chance to play IPL 2021 playoffs.
England all-rounder Chris Woakes hasn’t ruled himself out of playing the ICC T20 World Cup in India later this year. Woakes, who has represented England in 104 ODIs and 38 Tests, has played only eights T20Is with his last appearance in the format dating back to November 2015.
Set to play for Delhi Capitals in the 14th season of the Indian Premier League, Woakes is hoping to impress England white-ball captain Eoin Morgan with his all-round skills.
“I don’t want to rule out the T20 World Cup at all, I still see myself as a three-format cricketer. I’m looking to work on my variations, death bowling and explore some power-hitting options. Hopefully I can give Morgs [Eoin Morgan] and England a reminder of what I can do,” Woakes was quoted as saying by The Guardian.
Bought by Capitals at his base price of INR 1.5 crore before IPL 2020, Woakes had given the last season a miss due to family reasons. In 18 IPL matches across two seasons for Kolkata Knight Riders and Royal Challengers Bangalore, Woakes has picked 25 wickets at an economy and strike rate of 9.24 and 14.96 respectively.
“Delhi [Capitals] have been loyal to me and I want to repay that. It’s my third season in the IPL overall and I always come back a better cricketer,” Woakes said.
Chris Woakes opens up on picking one between IPL playoffs and Lord’s Test
Much like other English multi-format players, Woakes will also face the dilemma of picking one between the qualifying round of IPL 2021 and the first Test between England and New Zealand at the Lord’s starting from June 2.
There is no hiding to the fact that the English team management readily agrees to players skipping an international match or two to participate in the IPL as the same has yielded results for them in white-ball formats. Being asked about the same, Woakes didn’t shy away from stating that he might miss the Lord’s Test for an IPL opportunity.
“England want us to broaden our horizons in the IPL and, at this stage of my career, these opportunities won’t keep coming up. If it means missing a Test, that unfortunately might be the case,” Woakes added.
Having said that, Woakes did lay emphasis on the aforementioned happening if he is in Capitals’ scheme of things for the playoffs. For someone who has picked 27 wickets in five Tests at 11.33 and scored 306 runs including a century and half-century at the Lord’s, he wouldn’t want to miss a Test just to warm the bench for his IPL franchise.
“If I’m not in the Delhi XI, I’ll speak to Ricky [Ponting, head coach] and the powers-that-be. Of course, I want to play at Lord’s, my record there speaks for itself,” Woakes mentioned.