DURHAM spinner Scott Borthwick is determined to grab his England chance with both hands.
The 21-year-old made his full England debut this season, playing in a one-day international against Ireland in Dublin.
The Sunderland-born leg spinner, who also featured in two ODIs against Sri Lanka A for England Lions this term, only bowled one over against the Irish – going for 13 runs.
But the Durham man admits that his experience so far has made him hungry for more.
He said: “It’s always an honour to pull on the Three Lions, whether it is at youth, A or full international level.
“It’s every young sportsman’s dream to play for their country, whether it’s cricket, football, rugby or whatever.
“Playing for England is something you dream about as a kid and now that I’ve got the chance I’m determined to make the most of it.
“Hopefully, I can play in one or both of the games over this weekend (England face the West Indies in T20 games at the Oval tomorrow and Sunday) and get the chance to show what I can do.
“It means a great deal to play for my country and I just want to be able to prove that I’m worthy of the shirt.”
Borthwick certainly did that for his county this year. He took 35 first-class wickets from 14 matches at an average of 27.37.
He proved no slouch with the bat either hitting a total of 477 runs during those 14 games – his highest score being 101 against Sri Lanka A at the Emirates ICG.
Now the youngster wants to deliver for country as well as county.
“It’s been great to play more games for Durham this season,” he said. “I feel as if I’ve done all right with the ball and the bat, but I’m always looking to improve.
“I know that international cricket is a big step up and that opportunities may be limited, so it’s up to me to show what I can do.
“Hopefully, if I get the chance to play I can take some wickets and get some runs, and look to build on that.
“I can’t worry about it too much. All I can do is go out there if and when I get selected, and do the best I can.”
Playing in two Lions ODIs and the full international against Ireland has helped the youngster to feel more settled in and around the England camp.
“I’ve been down to bowl at England in the nets quite a few times now,” he said. “I think that helps because you get to know the players a bit better.
“I also bowled against some of the England players in the nets out in Australia during last winter’s Ashes Series, so it’s been a lot easier to settle in.
“There are some great players in this England squad, so competition will be tough, but that’s what you want.
“You want to test yourself against the best players.”
Borthwick’s team-mate, Durham all-rounder Ben Stokes is also included in the England squad to face the Windies, but may miss out due to a recurrence of a finger injury.