sport

Kieswetter: Great to be back

Craig Kieswetter is desperate to regain his place in the England team after an 18-month absence at the World Twenty20 this week.

England take on Sri Lanka on Thursday with the Somerset star back in the squad after he was called up to replace the injured Luke Wright.

He gives coach Ashley Giles another option - Kieswetter is one of the biggest hitters in county cricket, and six-hitting has been a problem for England for some time, with few batsman clearing the ropes on a regular basis.

And he believes he is a better player now than he was when he last represented his country.

Kieswetter was batting for Somerset in a pre-season warm-up match against Worcestershire when he was informed he had been summoned to Bangladesh.

It is his first call-up to the senior side since 2012 - at the last World Twenty20 in Sri Lanka.

"It was a definite surprise to the call-up, I was busy playing a warm-up against Worcestershire and was batting at the time," he said.

"It's certainly a different climate here, the first thing I had to do was throw the hand-warmers out of the bag and put the cool stuff in.

Delighted

"But it's always great to get the call, I've been out for 12 months or more so to be back, I'm delighted.

"First and foremost the most important thing is to be involved again, to be around the team is always a good thing.

"I've got a couple of practice sessions before the next game so I'll do as well as I can to put my hat in the ring."

Kieswetter scored a century in just his third one-day international, and then played a big role when England won the World Twenty20 in the Caribbean four years ago.

But he then suffered a terrible loss of form with his then-Somerset team-mate Jos Buttler - who has now moved on to Lancashire - and Yorkshire's Jonny Bairstow overtaking him.

"I think being thrust in at such a young age as I was, there would always be rough patches," he said.

"I had to find a way to deal with that, go away and work at aspects I needed to improve and I feel I've worked pretty hard these last 12 months or so.

"So to be back is quite a special thing and shows the work I'm doing is paying off."