Adam Finch is flying out to Bangladesh today as part of the England Young Lions squad – and is relishing tackling the challenges that will confront a pace bowler in the sub continent.
The Worcestershire CCC bowler is now one of the more experienced members of the 15 strong party which will take on the host nation in two Tests, three ODIs and one T20I from late January to the middle of February.
He made his debut at Under-19 level for his country versus India during the summer of 2017 and has since played in the 2018 ICC World Cup, a home series against South Africa and been part of a pre-Christmas training camp in Bangalore.
Finch picked up eight wickets against the Proteas on his last Test appearance at the Emirates Riverside but is prepared for different sorts of conditions in which to bowl during the next few weeks.
He said: “I’ve never been to this part of the world (Bangladesh) to play competitively so it is going to be really interesting to test myself in, what I think it is fair to say, is a less seamer-friendly environment.
“It’s something I’m looking forward to and if you do well in those conditions, it can only stand you in good stead.
“Hopefully you will come back to England having learnt a few things which, if Worcestershire play on a flat surface, can help me here as well. That will be a good challenge.”
Finch is willing to impart the experience he has gained at Under-19 (Young Lions) level to other members of the squad.
He said: “I think I’m classed as one of the old boys in the squad now which is a bit concerning because it feels like it wasn’t too long ago that I made my debut (at home to India).
“It will be a nice experience to be one of those older heads and hopefully have a positive impact on the team from a leadership perspective.”
Finch played against Bangladesh during the 2018 World Cup in Queenstown and was England’s most successful bowler with 2-36 in a five wicket defeat.
He said: “New Zealand was a completely different kind of conditions bowling-wise to what you expect to find in Bangladesh.
“I will take a bit of experience from playing against them, the kind of shots they favour, but maybe it was a little more helpful with the ball swinging and seaming around which I’m not sure we will get in Bangladesh.
“Will patience as a bowler be important? Stacking as many deliveries as you can on a good line and length and trying to challenge the stumps as frequently as possible is going to be really key.
“Then, if you can get any movement from there, or a batter makes a mistake, then you are in good stead to get an lbw or hopefully caught behind or bowled.
“To try and bring as many modes of dismissal I think is really important out there.”
Finch and the Young Lions prepared for nearly three weeks in Bangalore before flying home for Christmas and he worked closely with Head Coach Jon Lewis.
He said: “It was challenging because it was something I never experienced in terms of spin. You can recreate it as much as you like on a bowling machine but, when you are out there playing in a competitive mode, you get those challenges as well.
“It was really interesting to learn and adapt and test yourself in such extreme conditions.
“Myself and Jon Lewis had some good conversations on how you can best influence the games from a seam perspective and collecting data on what type of deliveries take the wickets, the areas the seamers bowl in which are the most effective etc
“That kind of analytical side of the game has been brought to me a bit more now which is nice. I’m looking at those kind of statistics to see what has worked and what hasn’t worked which gives you a little bit of a head start.”
Finch has sympathy for County colleague Jack Haynes who has been ruled out of the tour with a foot injury but expects him to bounce back strongly during the summer.
He said: “It is never nice for anyone to get injured but I know Jack as a person and as soon as he has recovered from his foot, he will come back stronger and will he will be fighting fit for the summer.
“I’ve no doubt he will score some runs and show what he can do.”
*Look out for Adam Finch discussing his first winter as a fully fledged professional cricketer, his aspirations with Worcestershire and targets for the summer in another article with the Worcestershire CCC website.