Rashid relishing Yorks role
Yorkshire’s England hopeful Adil Rashid admits it would be “a dream come true” to represent his country at Test level.
The 20-year-old leg-spinning all-rounder has made steady progress since an eye-catching first-class debut less than two years ago in which he took six wickets.
He ended the 2006 season with 25 wickets from just six appearances and he has further enhanced his reputation since with another 50 victims and a maiden century.
Having also made his mark with England Under-19s and recently returned from the Lions' tour of India, Rashid is widely tipped for senior international recognition sooner rather than later.
“I think I would be over the moon but I have still got a lot to do,” Rashid said.
“I think I’ve got to take it a game at a time and perform with the bat and the ball and then hopefully in the future I can look to aim higher.
“I have just got to look to perform for Yorkshire at county level but if
I do get selected obviously it would be a dream come true.”
Rashid offers enormous potential as a spinner, and given his batting and fielding abilities, he could soon be putting pressure on Monty Panesar for a place.
The modest Rashid has yet no such thoughts and is merely concentrating on his own game - chiefly his bowling - and not the growing hype.
He said: “I like to ignore things like that and just play cricket, not have that in the back of my mind.
“It doesn’t really bother me, I don’t watch TV or read the newspapers much.
“It’s been a good winter, I’ve been to India twice with England A (Lions) and it’s been a good experience.
“From last year I think I have improved a bit with the bat and ball, so hopefully this season I can have a good season.
“I think my main thing is a bowling all-rounder, although I made my debut as a batsman and I’ve got to perform with the bat.
“It’s going quite well, but I’ve still got a lot of things to work on, my action and my deliveries. There is still a long way to go but hopefully I’ll get there.”
Rashid was speaking at Farsley Cricket Club in West Yorkshire, one of the showcase clubs in this year’s NatWest CricketForce initiative.
The scheme, backed by the ECB, has this year has mobilised a volunteer workforce of 85,000 to renovate 1,375 cricket clubs across the country.
Rashid’s success has seen him cast as a role model at Yorkshire given that so few of the county’s large cricket-playing Asian population have made it into the senior side.
It is a position he recognises as important but one he accepts with humility.
Rashid, a product of the Bradford League and Yorkshire’s under-age programme, said: “I do feel like a role model for Yorkshire cricket, being the second or third Asian to have broken through.
“It feels quite good but it doesn’t matter if you are Asian or whatever colour, if you are good enough you will be playing.”