Prior Eyes Return To England Side

Matt Prior
Matt Prior has already targeted a return to England ranks
©REUTERS / Action Images

Sidelined England wicket-keeper Matthew Prior will soon be undergoing Achilles surgery but has already set his sights on returning to international cricket.

Since Prior stepped back from England duty, he has seen his erstwhile deputy Jos Buttler perform admirably to help inflict a 3-1 Test series defeat on India.

But Prior, who has struggled with hand, thigh and Achilles problems, says he will return to cricket after his operation and aims to regain his place in the England squad.

"I'm hoping by January to be as physically fit as I have ever been, and then it's a case of getting some cricket under my belt and getting to the levels I expect of myself and proving to the selectors that I am playing good cricket," Prior said in an interview with Reuters.

He added that he would be quite prepared to travel to the West Indies, where England next play Test cricket, in April next year, as Buttler's understudy.

"If I have to go as a number two batter-wicket-keeper then so be it. I'm more than happy to do that," Prior, who was speaking at an event at the Singapore Cricket Club.

"The minute Jos went in the team I'm only ever there to help and I sent him a message to say if you need anything.

"But at the moment he is going great guns so I leave him to it obviously. But it's a funny old game and things turn around very quickly."

Looking back on the series, which saw England recover from a 95-run defeat at Lord's with comprehensive wins of their own at The Ageas Bowl, Emirates Old Trafford and The Kia Oval, Prior paid tribute to captain Alastair Cook and his team.

"We have been through tough times recently and it was just great to see Cooky smiling again and the lads up on that podium getting some of that victory champagne," he said.

"He has shown how strong he is and how he won't back down, and how much he trusts and backs himself to come through whatever.

"For him to come back like he did from that position is just credit to him entirely."

© Cricket World 2014