Stephen Harmison cannot wait for his chance to have a first crack at Sri Lanka this season when England take on the tourists in a Twenty20 clash at Hampshireâ€™s Rose Bowl ground on Thursday.
The Durham fast bowler has been sidelined from top-flight international action with a shin injury for several months and could only watch from the sidelines as Sri Lanka held England to a 1-1 draw in their recent Test series.
â€œIâ€™m just looking forward to playing if itâ€™s against Sri Lanka, Pakistan or whoever Iâ€™m playing against for Durham. I just want to go out there and play a game of cricket,â€ said Harmison, who took three for 58 in his first England appearance since March during their 38-run One-day International win over Ireland in Belfast on Tuesday.
â€œIâ€™ve spent a bit of time on my backside watching television and shouting at the TV when England were playing Sri Lanka. Now Iâ€™ve got the chance to do what I do best and thatâ€™s to bowl for England.â€
Understandably, Harmisonâ€™s radar was a bit wayward against Ireland and he sent down eight wides.
But the 27-year-old charged in quickly enough to suggest that, if he stays injury-free, he could be a key factor for England in their five-match one-day series with Sri Lanka, which starts at Lordâ€™s on Saturday, and the subsequent Test campaign against Pakistan.
â€œI was flying in (against Ireland) and the ball didnâ€™t go where I wanted it to go, but I still felt if I bowled quick enough the batsmen would struggle to handle the pace as other international batsmen could,â€ he said.
England, desperate to make sure their strike bowler if fit for the Ashes series in Australia later this year, instructed Durham not to play Harmison in their championship match against Warwickshire last week.
Source:The NewsMore on:Durham, england, Hampshire, Sri Lanka in England 2006, Stephen Harmison, Twenty20
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