Finn keen to make his mark again
Steven Finn is out to prove a point once more in Abu Dhabi - where he first showed himself to be an England fast bowler of the future.
Finn was an uncapped 20-year-old, in February 2010, when he took 2-25 in four overs as England Lions beat the national seniors in a last-ball Twenty20 finish at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium.
Barely a month later, after a raft of injuries to first-choice seamers, he made his Test debut in Bangladesh - and much of what Finn has done in the intervening two years has helped to establish his standing as a coming force in international cricket.
When the 6ft 8in seamer returns to the scene of that Lions triumph on Friday, it will be as a member of the full England squad - taking on the second string for the first time since - as they prepare for the four-match one-day international series against Pakistan.
This time, therefore, Finn will be hoping to impress over 50 overs to try to book his place in a team aiming to fare much better against Pakistan than they did in the 3-0 Test series whitewash which concluded in Dubai on Monday.
Finn has endured a frustrating five weeks so far in the United Arab Emirates, carrying the drinks as his fellow bowlers performed well but to no avail.
Yet he senses a chance for him, and others, to prove to team director Andy Flower that they may just be the right people to take England forward here - and in the months and years to come.
“Obviously, I want to play every game of cricket that’s available for England,” said the Middlesex paceman.
“I hope, moving towards this one-day series, I’m going to get an opportunity to show what I can do.
“Andy Flower and the management team are looking for people’s attitudes; they’re looking for things other than just performances - and games like this are a great opportunity for people on both sides to show everything they can give.”
Finn can hardly point to the failings of those who bowled instead of him during the Tests - because Stuart Broad, James Anderson and spinners Monty Panesar and Graeme Swann did their best to keep England in contention.
However, he can cite his own most recent ODI performances - eight wickets in the 5-0 ODI series defeat in India representing a flattering statistic.
“The bowlers did a fantastic job during this Test series,” he said. “Obviously I wanted to play every game. I was disappointed that I didn’t.
“But I just have to keep my head down in the nets, keep trying to show I’m ready to play. Then, when I get my next opportunity, I hope I’ll be able take it.
“After the India series, I’ve got confidence in the way I bowled - and I hope I can bring that forward into this series.”
Finn is confident those involved in the chastening loss to India can enjoy improved fortunes this time round.
“India is probably by far the hardest place to tour,” he said.
“So we can take confidence that, having lost 5-0, we can learn from our experiences out there. It’s important in cricket you do that quickly - otherwise, you’ll be elbowed out the door.
“That 5-0 in India was obviously a hard thing to take - and we’ll be trying very, very hard to try to make sure that something like that doesn’t happen again.”