SOUTHAMPTON, England – Ravi Bopara is eager to make up for lost times as he tries to revive his England career in the forthcoming one-day international series against the West Indies.
The 27-year-old all-rounder, a middle-order batsman and medium-pace bowler, was in line to bat at number six during England's 2-1 win over the West Indies in a three-Test series wrapped up earlier this week.
Instead Bopara's calf injury paved the way for Jonathan Bairstow to make his Test debut in the opener at Lord's and retain the number six position for the remainder of the series.
However, Bopara – a veteran of 72 ODIs – is set to bat at number four against the West Indies in the first of three ODIs at Southampton on Saturday.
“I'm really looking forward to it,” Bopara said Thursday.
“I haven't played a lot of cricket for England recently because of injuries.
“So it's exciting for me, and I'm in good form.”
Bopara returned at the start of this month with a 50-over century, and then one in four-day cricket too, for Essex.
As for his injury problems Bopara, who has played 12 Tests, said: “It's very frustrating. It's only recently I've started to get a few injuries.
“Before that, I very rarely missed games through injury ... it's probably a sign of me getting old. “It is annoying. It is frustrating. But whatever's meant to be is meant to be.”
He added: “I guess what it does is it gives someone else an opportunity to cement their place, and that's not ideal.
“But it means when I get my opportunity, I've got to cement my place. Let's hope I get it soon.” – Sapa-AFP