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September 10, 2013
Simon Kerrigan, the Lancashire left-arm spinner, is determined to use the chastening experience of his Test debut to make himself into a better cricketer and earn another chance in the England team.
Kerrigan was handed his first cap in the final Ashes Test against Australia, at The Oval, but was treated with disdain on the opening day, especially by Shane Watson, as he bowled eight overs for 53 including a series of long hops and full tosses.
He was not given another bowl in the match by Alastair Cook and Kerrigan has admitted it took a few days to feel his normal self again. But he believes quickly returning to action with Lancashire was the best thing that he could have done following some consoling words from England team director, Andy Flower.
"I'm my own biggest critic and I was really disappointed with how it went. I was feeling sorry for myself for a couple of days, but getting back into things straight away with Lancashire helped," Kerrigan told BBC Radio Lancashire. "Andy Flower took me to one side and said 'you are far better off having the experience you've had now rather than getting a go in four or five years, and it would be an even greater story if you bounced back from it and had a prospering Test career'.
"As long as I keep an energy about myself, wanting to get better - an experience like that drives you on to get better, get back into the side and, if you get another chance, prove what you can do.''
Kerrigan returned to Lancashire colours the day after celebrating with his England team-mates at The Oval, taking 1 for 45 in a YB40 encounter against Essex, and looked to have regained his form and confidence in the Championship match against Hampshire at Southport, where he took seven wickets and scored an unbeaten 62 at No. 11.
He refuses, though, to put down his troubled debut to the easy excuse of first-game nerves. "I tried to rely on the times where I've been nervous but also come out of the other side and done really well from that. I wouldn't say it was just nerves. Technically, it didn't click. That's what happens with young spinners. I'm 24, still learning my action and still learning the game."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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