Believes he's good enough to play international cricket June 15, 2006

Gough slams selectors for ignoring him

Cricinfo staff

Gough believes he's in the shoot-out for a World Cup spot © Getty Images

Darren Gough has hit out at England's selectors by claiming that "everyone" knows he should be in his country's one-day side for the series against Sri Lanka. Overlooked for the five-match contest beginning on June 17 at Lord's, Gough insisted that he was in contention for a World Cup spot and that he could still be playing Test cricket.

"Everyone's been saying to me they can't believe I've not been around in the England squad," Gough, 35, told The Wisden Cricketer. "Everybody I'm playing against. You need experience to win competitions, as teams have proved in the past, and I know I can still do a job in international cricket. Other players who tried to fill my boots didn't do any better than Darren Gough, and they went for a lot more runs than I would go for."

Gough said that Englang needed his expertise as both opening and 'death' bowler in the one-day version. "I've been missed when I've not played," he said. "The problem is, at my age and with my experience, when I do play I have to do the hard work. I bowl at the start of the innings, when the ball's getting slapped all round the park, and I bowl at the end 'cos I'm the expert player; I have to take the brunt of the work at that point. And I can take that because my team-mates know I'm doing that job. But the media, at the end of the day, just look at my figures and how many runs I've gone for."

Gough also admitted that his decision to retire from Test cricket in 2003 was wrong. Concerns over a dodgy knee being able to cope with the demands of five-day cricket had forced that move, but Gough revealed it was a premature move. "I did it because my knee was in such a state that I didn't think I could get through two days, never mind five. But with going to Germany and my fitness improving I've gradually got better and better. If I'd waited and not rushed back to play for England I could probably still have been playing for England now, even though I'm 35, 'cos I am good enough."