Veteran seamer Stuart Broad says he “felt sick with nerves” about the prospect of missing not only Nottinghamshire’s one-day cup final today but England’s opening Test against South Africa on Thursday.
Broad suffered a heel injury playing for Notts in the County Championship last month but has rested, recovered and declared himself fit for both the 50-over decider against Surrey and the Proteas Test at Lord’s.
“I wanted to bowl five or six overs as a fitness test and I’ve managed to do that,” said Broad.
“I bowled off a full run-up and the England guys have said it’s up to me, I’ve played enough cricket to know if I’m fit or not.
“You go into a Lord’s final ready to bowl 10 overs and if you get through that comfortably then you’re ready for a Test match, in my opinion.
“I felt sick with nerves for three or four days because I’ve worked really hard for three months and played a lot of cricket pretty much for the biggest three weeks of the year.
“A Lord’s final for your county you’ve played every game for, a Lord’s Test and your home Test. The first step is a tick for the final.
“A lot of work has gone into getting me ready. It was a one- centimetre tear in the fat pad and usually you heal a centimetre a week so it was touch and go, but the physios have been awesome.”
Quick Single: Cricket returns to free-to-air TV in England
Broad has formed a lethal new-ball partnership with Australian tyro James Pattinson at Nottinghamshire this season.
Combined, the pair have taken 70 wickets at 22 across both 50-over and four-day formats.
While he’s part of the Test furniture, Broad – who has 368 wickets in 102 matches – wants to make a return to one-day international cricket having not played since February last year.
The 2019 World Cup on home soil remains a big carrot for the 31-year-old, whose push for a recall continues on Saturday in the final at Lord’s.
Quick Single: Warne picks bolter in England Test XI
“When I was starting out and coming through school, I think Frank Hayes said to me the best way to get into the England team is to win trophies,” said Broad.
“If you play in successful teams you put yourself out there. I’ve been fortunate to play in all the Royal London Cup games so far and some have been really intense.
“The more I play the more I’m learning and the better plans I’m getting. There is a reason we’ve got to a final – we’ve played good cricket with a strong bowling unit and a great batting line-up.
“You play white-ball cricket to win trophies and to play for England don’t you? And I still have that ambition.
“I thought I was close in the Champions Trophy when Woakesy (injured quick Chris Woakes) did his side. I was staring at my phone, but it didn’t ring. Maybe in two years’ time at the World Cup.”