Before anything else, preparation is the key to success.
Whilst the questioning wasn’t centred around the famous Alexander Graham Bell quote, Saturday night proved it true.
Driving to Edgbaston on Saturday afternoon, Henry Brookes knew he wasn’t playing and an evening in the dugout as 12th man was likely. But cricket can throw curveballs and this was a pretty big one.
Warming up, Hassan Ali rolled his ankle, minutes before the toss and following a quick discussion, it was Brookes who got the nod. There wasn’t too much time to think, but Brookes was ready.
He was so prepared in fact, that he removed Jonny Bairstow in the second over, took 4/32, struck a 42-run partnership with Sam Hain and make a wonderful catch on the run.
If it wasn’t for Hain’s brilliance with the bat, Brookes would have been a worthy Player of the Match winner.
“I obviously came to the game knowing that it wasn’t going to play,” said the 23-year old. “Hassan rolled his ankle in the warm-up, which was a shame, but I got the nod and it was pretty fun – especially as I love playing for the Bears!
“You’ve always got to stay prepared, haven’t you? When I saw Hassan was injured, I switched on, got on my preparation done, and I was ready going into it/
“Selection is is one of those things where It’s always going to upset someone. I was a little bit gutted to not be in the squad, but to get that last minute call I was over the moon. I always love playing in the big moments, especially at the death, it’s good fun.
“Everyone’s on top form, but we can’t get too carried away. It’s the first game, we’ve done well, but we want to keep going and play this positive brand of cricket. It’s going to be a big couple of weeks.”