Thursday, December 31st, 2015

Barnard No Regrets After Choosing To Challenge For First Team Spot

Barnard No Regrets After Choosing To Challenge For First Team Spot

Ed Barnard says he has "no regrets" about curtailing his involvement with England Under-19s last Spring to concentrate on trying to become established in the first team squad at New Road.

The Worcestershire all-rounder and Joe Clarke would have been strong candidates to feature in the Test and ODI Series Down Under against the Australian Under-19s.

But they opted instead to be part of Worcestershire's squad for the pre-season tour of Abu Dhabi and to challenge for a senior spot with the County in 2015.

Clarke went onto enjoy an excellent second half of the campaign, culminating in an England Lions call-up, while Barnard played every white ball game for the Rapids in the NatWest T20 Blast and Royal London One-Day Cup.

Barnard said: "That was massive really. It is always hard when your country asks if you want to play for them.

"It was quite a big decision for us both to say 'we actually prefer to stay here' but I think for both of us it worked really well.

"It got us in and around the Worcestershire squad.

"We were still playing a high quality of cricket in Abu Dhabi and, as soon as we got back, we both got chances in the first team.

"Both of us played well out in Abu Dhabi so it showed the coaches we could step up if they wanted us to and, from that, we got the chances during the season.

"I think there are no regrets on our part."