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David Willey happy to get involved if confrontation comes his way

The England all-rounder clashed with Bhuvneshwar Kumar at Old Trafford.

David Willey is in no mood to avoid any further confrontation after querying whether Bhuvneshwar Kumar was playing within the ‘spirit of cricket’ in India’s opening Vitality IT20 victory.

The tourists trounced England by eight wickets at Old Trafford, and can therefore wrap up the three-match series in Cardiff on Friday evening.

A match notable for England’s travails against the spin of Kuldeep Yadav also featured a minor fracas between Willey and Kumar.

The England all-rounder described the incident as “something and nothing” – but having waved Kumar away in Manchester, wondered out loud whether it was right for the seamer to twice pull out of his action while he legitimately moved in his crease 22 yards away.

“I’m guessing – but I think he was looking to see what I was going to do,” he said.

“I’m not sure what the rules are on that. I don’t particularly like it – I don’t think it is necessarily in the spirit of cricket.

“Personally I don’t think I’d do that. I don’t think it is great.”

I don’t particularly like it - I don’t think it is necessarily in the spirit of cricket David Willey

Willey is no shrinking presence in the middle, and he said: “I don’t mind a bit of confrontation.

“If it comes my way I am quite happy to get involved (but) we are advised to play cricket and leave those antics to other people.”

After being flummoxed by Kuldeep’s left-arm wrist-spin, England perhaps have more pressing concerns than an occasional phantom delivery.

Jonny Bairstow and Joe Root were both stumped for golden ducks, as England lost three wickets in four balls.

Willey suspects, however, that a little more familiarity with Kuldeep will work in their favour.

“People come in, a little bit of unknown, you’re maybe not 100 per cent sure how someone’s going to bowl,” he said.

“It can baffle you a little bit. But our numbers against spin are brilliant, unbelievable, and we’ll come back.

“No doubt tomorrow will be a different outcome. It was just one of them days, someone took a few wickets.”

Kuldeep Yadav, right, put England in a spin at Old Trafford (Martin Rickett/PA)

England will not waste undue energy fretting.

“We don’t get het-up on one little thing like that,” said Willey. “Yes, it cost us in that last game, but we don’t dwell on things like that.

“We go out and we play our way, and everyone has full confidence in our batters that tomorrow will be a different story.”


From Belfast Telegraph