ith a match-winning innings of 61 from 38 balls, Jason Roy came through a “big test” to show just how far his game has come, on the occasion of his 50th T20 international.
Despite slaying them for a century at the ODI World Cup two years ago, Bangladesh’s bowlers represented a poor match-up for Roy given his struggles in the past against left-arm spin. A dry pitch would appear to have made his life trickier still.
Roy was delighted with how he came through the challenge, opening up on how he has been working with England reserve Liam Dawson on his game against slow left-armers. That work appears to be paying off; this year, against leg-spinners and left-arm orthodox, he is averaging 31 and striking at 143.
“Yeah, that was nice,” he said. “I have obviously been working very hard on that for the last few years. It’s a part of my game that has improved a lot.
“Today was a very big test for me coming in with two left-arm spinners, two left-arm seamers and an off spinner. I had to really use all the skills I’ve learnt, and it seemed to work.
“As a batsman, as a cricketer, you always have some darker thoughts going into your mind before the game: What if; this can happen; this can happen. But you just have to remind yourself that your training has been so good. I worked a hell of a lot against Liam Dawson in the nets. He’s been bowling so much to me which has really helped my game.
“It was a big game for me to go out there today, put all the hard work I’ve been doing into the nets into play. Credit to the bowlers but still, to knock it off, yeah, very pleased.”
This was Roy’s 50th T20 international, since debuting seven years ago, and he feels England are just getting into their stride.
“You grow up a little bit, I guess. A tiny bit,” he laughed when asked what had changed across his career.
“But at the start of my career I feel like there were just sporadic T20s here and there, one or two tagged on alongside a 50-over series. It’s been nice to get into a bit more of a routine over the last couple of years. Covid stuffed things up a little bit for us, but nice to get going here.”