Sunday 6 January 2008 

Steve Finn: We Have Everything...To Win The World Cup

Middlesex and England Under-19 fast bowler Steve Finn spoke to Cricket World when the ECB NatWest CricketForce travelled to Kirby Muxloe to help build a new pavilion. Having recently returned from India with the English Performance Programme squad, Finn is currently preparing, along with his team-mates for the Under-19 World Cup in Malaysia in February.

Cricket World: When did you get back from India?

Steve Finn: Well I got back from India on the fifteenth of December.

Good Christmas and New Year?

It was alright but I have just had two operations on my groin which wasn’t great so now I am in the recovery process and it's about six weeks until I am fit again.

Obviously your Christmas can’t be as excessive as the rest of us as; do you still have got to watch what you eat, for example?

Of course, you have got to watch out for yourself and keep in shape. Also with the World Cup coming up at the moment, everyone is geared up and getting ready for that really.

So how are preparations going for the World Cup?

Preparation is going brilliantly. The trip to India with the Performance squad was great, with that I was getting a lot more experience by sharing a room with the likes of Chris Tremlett and obviously bowling with them everyday was a great experience. So really preparation couldn’t have gone better. I have had a minor setback with the injury and it should be alright for the Trip to Malaysia.

Was it quite a big step up for you in India bowling alongside the likes of Tremlett?

It was a bit of a surprise really, I was called on when Luke Wright got injured, so I replaced him in the squad and ended up playing both games. Myself, James Harris and Billy Goodleman all went out there as part of the squad and it was a brilliant experience.

What do you think of your chances in the World Cup?

I think we are actually in great shape to win the World Cup. We have everything a team needs to win the World Cup as every aspect of our game is excellent.

A lot of you have already made your first class debuts, you included. So that must stand you in good stead?

Definitely, I think actually eight or nine of us have played first class cricket with various numbers of us being successful. I think when we get out there to the World Cup, our experience will show. Hopefully everyone will be fully fit and we will be able to sustain a high level of performance throughout the tour.

Who do you think are the other teams that you are going to have to be looking out for?

Well in our group we have Bangladesh, Bermuda and Ireland. I don’t think that we will have an easy game in any of them as they have all earnt the right to be there. Bangladesh will be a strong team and will be helped by the fact that they are sort of in their own conditions. Pakistan and India, sub-continent sides will be good out on their own turf so I don’t think we can take anyone lightly, whether that is someone like Bermuda or Australia. We have got to take every game as it comes.

The likes of Tamim Iqbal are in the squad for Bangladesh. He has made his Test debut and got 50, so are their any special plans for him?

All the players have earnt the right to be there, meaning that they will be good players. I am just going to focus on bowling in the right places.

Looking forward to the county season, are you looking to push yourself into the first team on a more regular basis?

Yeah, I played the last eight games of last year and put in some good performances. I actually topped the averages of the Middlesex bowling averages so that was great for me. I have had a taster and really I want to just keep it going and carrying on by starting from the off next season and continue improving over the year.

It must be special to play at Lord's as your home ground?

It’s a brilliant place to play your cricket with the History of Lords and the surroundings there make it an amazing place to play, so it really isn’t hard to get yourself geed up for a game.

Who have been your role models when growing up?

I have always looked at Glenn McGrath as someone as a role model for my bowling. I see myself like him. A big long fellow, who tries to hit the deck.

Well I think England could do with someone like him, so no pressure there…

No, no pressure! Other than that it is good to get experience with guys at Middlesex like Chris Silverwood, Alan Richardson and Tim Murtagh. Also by picking the brains of the overseas players, like Murali Karthik and Chaminda Vaas. Getting tips from them is brilliant as they are great role models.

I was just about to ask about to ask about the impact of the overseas players to a youngster like yourself?

Everyone seems to have a spin bowler and a fast bowler as their overseas player, so it was good to have Chaminda last year and talk to him about bowling and letting him tell me his tricks because he is a very clever bowler. So its just great to have them around you and to learn off them.

© Cricket World 2008
John Pennington/Pierce Morley-Barnes