IN the wake of his nightmare Ashes debut Boyd Rankin has vowed to work even harder to play further Test matches for England.
Rankin took his Ashes bow in the fifth Test against Australia in the Sydney Cricket Ground last week but his delight turned to despair when the pace bowler was forced to retire during the first innings with cramp.
The Bready man returned to bowl 12 overs in the second innings but the lingering effects of the cramp meant he was given limited time with ball in hand.
It wasn’t the debut the Warwickshire player had hoped for but it hasn’t in any way diminished his determination to become a regular in the England set-up.
In fact, having got a real taste of first class action, the 6’8” fast bowler wants more.
Despite being part of England’s 5-0 Ashes horror show he said, “I have the urge to work even harder and play a few more.
“The first couldn’t have gone much worse, having come off with cramp it was a tough few days.
“It was only on the last day that I felt pretty much at home but I have learned so much from those three days in terms of what I want to do if I get another opportunity.
“It’s just a pity there wasn’t a fourth and fifth day. It was short and sweet and that’s the way the way the series has gone.”
The only real positive for Rankin was the fact his family had travelled out to see the fifth and final Test.
“When I look back on the Test, the best bit was that my family was there. It was the only Test they had come out for and I think they were chuffed to see my make my debut.”
Rankin, who claimed the wicket of Peter Siddle, said he will always cherish the moment he was told he was making his Ashes debut but believes the excitement of the occasion and the fact he hadn’t be able to sleep the night because of nerves had contributed to his cramp.
The lack of match practice was obviously another contributing factor.
“I must admit I didn’t sleep that night with nerves and excitement. It didn’t help that I had a back spasm and had to be checked out that morning before playing,” he added.
“Nerves and tension certainly played their part.”