So, what’s it like to be worth $2.33 million?
It’s pretty cool. Obviously, the money’s a bit mental. It’s a life-changing sum but, to be honest, I find talking about it a little embarrassing.”
The Pune Supergiants clearly have high expectations of you. How are you coping with the pressure?
Andrew Flintoff told me that the pressure of playing in the IPL is unlike anything else in cricket. Rather than stress, though, I see it as responsibility. I want to deliver on what the Supergiants have paid for me. It just makes me want to work ever harder.”
Talking of responsibility, what was it like being told you’re the England test side’s new vice captain?
When [Director of Cricket] Andrew Strauss broke the news, I was delighted. It’s very pleasing when the people at the very top of our game see what you’ve accomplished on the field and think that you merit the responsibility of being a vice captain. It’s a huge honour and I’m really looking forward to go through everything with Rooty.
You mention Joe Root. How do you think he’ll shape up as a leader.
I think he’ll be a wonderful captain. There’s been some talking that he should just concentrate of making runs but Rooty’s got such great mental strength, I don’t think the pressure will tell on him at all. When he’s at the crease, he’ll be Joe Root the batsman. He’ll be Joe Root the captain when we’re in the field.
Rooty’s a natural leader. And he’s a great source of wisdom to tap in the shape of Alastair Cook who I’m sure will be a major part of the England set-up for a very long time to come.
You were interviewed for the captain’s job, weren’t you?
Yes, I was. I think that the highest honour next to playing for England is captaining England. But Rooty’s the right man to do the job. He’s got the respect of the entire dressing room. He’s got a great cricket mind on him. He’s going to do a great job.
He’s certainly got his work cut out for him.
It’s a very exciting year for international cricket, 2017. We’ve got South Africa and the West Indies touring this summer which I’m looking forward to. I’ve got very fond memories of our last series against the Proteas so it’ll be exciting to see what I can do over the summer. And then we’ve the Ashes tour at the end of the year. I just can’t wait to get stuck in.
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