Following his career best nine for 36 vs. Durham, Warwickshire and Birmingham Bears all rounder Chris Woakes was called up for the second Test Match against Sri Lanka.
until you deliver at international level, there are people who don’t believe that you truly belongChris Woakes
Stepping in for the injured Ben Stokes, Woakes had some big shoes to fill, but pressure aside this was a also a golden opportunity to establish himself as an England regular by delivering wickets and runs for the England team.
In the past Chris has stated that “until you deliver at international level, there are people who don’t believe that you truly belong” and he was eyeing this opportunity has his chance to dismiss the naysayers in tabloids and commentary boxes.
Selecting Woakes offered a different dynamic to the England team, his classic right arm action is one for cricket purists to admire and his range of deliveries are very different to his contemporaries. However, it’s not been easy for Chris to attract the attention of England selectors, following a series unfortunate injuries he has had to reconstruct his bowling action and discover how to add pace to his new bowling style.
So far it has gone well for Chris in the 2016 domestic season. Woakes has looked sharp, bowling effectively and seemingly getting fastest each week, culminating his his career best figures against Durham on the day he was called up.
The progression has continued for Chris, during the second Test at Woakes was in fact the quickest of all the bowlers given the ball that day and his burst pace in the first innings brought about the Sri Lanka middle order collapse on day two.
Woakes clean and classical bowling is perfectly offset by Stokes more bullish and aggressive style
So what’s next for Chris Woakes? Ben Stokes will not be available for the third Test at Lord’s, which should more-or-less allow Chris to retain his place following his second Test performance. There is big question mark over what will happens once Ben Stokes is fully fit again and whether Chris Woakes will have done enough to secure his spot in the starting XI.
The prospect of having a middle order combination of Woakes and Stokes in the England line-up is very exciting. The two have contrasting, but complimentary style. Woakes clean and classical bowling is perfectly offset by Stokes more bullish and aggressive style. Having that sort of dynamic in addition to the opening attack of Anderson and Broad could mark something a golden era in recent English Test bowling.
All speculation aside, Woakes’ is the master of his own destiny and the only way he can guarantee his spot in the starting line-up by delivering wickets and runs in equal measure. We hope that Chris continues his good form and that the next Test will see him firmly establish his dominance with the bat and ball.
Catch Chris Woakes this summer
England take on Pakistan this summer in an Investec Test Match and tickets are on sale priced from £31 for Adults and from just £6 for Juniors (U16s). You can purchase your tickets now by calling 0844 847 1902 or click here to book online.