Tom Banton wants to skip IPL to focus on red-ball career

Banton, who played just two matches for Kolkata Knight Riders in the two-month long IPL last year, said he wanted to play cricket and not warm the bench.

Tom Banton in action against Pakistan in the T20I series last year.   -  AP

Top-order batsman Tom Banton is considering skipping the Indian Premier League this year and focus on domestic red-ball cricket to enhance his chances of making it to England's Test side.

The 22-year-old, who played just two matches for Kolkata Knight Riders in the two-month long IPL last year, said he wanted to play cricket and not warm the bench.

"Growing up as a kid the IPL was a tournament that I absolutely loved watching. But I feel like I'm at a stage now where I need to be playing cricket instead of sitting on the bench," he was quoted as saying by 'Sky Sports'.

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"The last year has taught me quite a bit, obviously all these tournaments are great but a lot of them I've been sat on the sidelines and not really doing a huge amount. I miss batting and playing cricket if I'm being honest," he added.

Banton, who scored just 18 runs in his two innings for KKR, was one of the six players to be released by the franchise ahead of the auction for the 2021 edition.

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"I feel at this point in my career it's probably best if I play a few red-ball games for Somerset and get back into that because I do miss playing red-ball cricket and my ambition is still to play Test cricket," he said.

"We'll have to wait and see. I still haven't decided yet, but I'm just going to speak to a few people and try to decide from there."