“I’ve found my enjoyment and love again. When you have that, it makes you hungry to keep improving, expanding your game, developing as a player,” David Willey said.
David Willey said he had found his love of cricket again after being given a second chance at an England career. The 32-year-old all-rounder helped set up Sunday’s one-day international series decider against India by starring with both bat and ball as England drew level at 1-1 in a three-match contest with a 100-run win at Lord’s on Thursday. He made a valuable 41 with the bat and then the left-arm quick captured the prize wicket of Virat Kohli just when the star batsman was threatening to cut loose.
The 32-year-son of former England batsman Peter Willey has been retained in the squad for Sunday’s concluding ODI against India at Old Trafford rather than be released to captain Yorkshire in Saturday’s T20 Blast finals day at Edgbaston.
It is all a far cry from when he was dropped from the England squad on the eve of their triumphant 2019 50-over World Cup campaign, with Willey replaced by newly-available fast bowler Jofra Archer.
But he has found joy in cricket again since being recalled by England in the Covid-affected 2020 season.
“I had a bit of a patch when I didn’t bowl as well, around the time of the World Cup, and I fell out of love with the game,” he said.
“But I’ve found my enjoyment and love again. When you have that, it makes you hungry to keep improving, expanding your game, developing as a player.
“If you stand still, you go backwards. I think I have continued to try to improve and my love for the game helps that.
“This is a great dressing room to be in, win or lose. Everyone enjoys the dressing room because it’s a great place to be and that’s reflected in performances over the years.”