Denly eyeing World Cup spot through IPL

Having played in the recent T20I series against the West Indies, Denly hopes to get selectors’ attention by doing well for Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL.

Denly’s form in white ball cricket for Kent in 2018 has brought him on the selectors’ radar for a spot in England’s World Cup squad.   -  FILE PHOTO/ AFP

 

England all-rounder Joe Denly is looking at the ongoing Indian Premier League to impress upon the national selectors and guarantee his place in this year’s World Cup squad.

Denly’s form in white ball cricket for Kent in 2018 has brought him on the selectors’ radar for a spot in England’s World Cup squad. He recorded an average of 70.28 in the Royal London One-Day Cup for Kent, besides scoring 409 runs in 12 innings — including two fifties and a hundred — in the Vitality Blast.

With his part-time leg-spin, Denly also scalped 20 wickets at an average of 16.75 and an economy rate of 7.76.

Having played in the recent T20I series against the West Indies, Denly hopes to get selectors’ attention by doing well for Kolkata Knight Riders in the IPL.

“I want to play as many games as I can. It’s important leading up to the World Cup. Hopefully I get some game time here and can contribute to some good performances. And then hopefully the England selectors will be watching them,” said Denly, who recently made his Test debut for England in the lost series against the West Indies.

KKR boast of a star-studded foreign players line-up and Denly is still waiting in the pipeline for a dream IPL debut.

“We have some good players in the franchise and I think it’s a great position to be in. Hopefully, I can put my hands up and be in games,” he said.

“I am coming here on the back of a busy winter. I have been to the West Indies and Sri Lanka. I am used to these hot conditions. So I feel like I am well acclimatised and ready to go.”

Host England is considered a strong favourite to lift its maiden World Cup title this year, but Denly thinks otherwise and said their sole aim would be to play their best cricket in every game of the mega-event.

This year’s fifty-over World Cup, beginning May 30, is regarded as an “open” tournament with all 10 teams playing each other in a round-robin format with the top four qualifying for the semifinals.

“I don’t think we (England) are favourites. We will just be focussing on trying to produce our best cricket in every game we play. Hopefully that leads to success,” he said.

KKR beat Sunrisers Hyderabad by six wickets in its first game on Sunday; courtesy Andre Russell's unbeaten 49 off 19.