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Chris Woakes said that he will be fit and ready for England’s ODI series against South Africa despite returning from a draining season with the Kolkata Knight Riders in the Indian Premier League. Woakes, will be joining the rest of the England side for a training camp in Spain ahead of the three-match ODI series that precedes the ICC Champions Trophy to be held in June. (Results | Fixtures | Points Table)
Woakes, Ben Stokes and Jos Buttler, who all are returning from playing in the IPL are expected to spared some of the more intense physical training drills in Spain. “That is what we had to weigh up before coming here,” Woakes told ESPNcricinfo, “Either take time off or come and have this experience. You don’t know if these opportunities are going to come around ever again. It might be a one-off for myself. You just never know.”
Woakes has had a successful stint in the IPL where he taken 17 wickets in 13 appearances for KKR with a personal best of 3/6 when during the thumping 82-run win over Royal Challengers Bangalore. His performance is only part of what has been a remarkable year for Woakes in which he has become an integral part of England’s bowling attack across all formats.
“My body feels pretty good,” he said when asked about his fitness, “As a fast bowler, you are always hurting somewhere. You always have to look after parts of your body. I’m no different. I feel good. I feel fine going back to England and hopefully playing a key part for England this summer.”
Woakes came into the auction with a base price of Rs 2 crore and ended up being bought by KKR for twice that amount. “I had to weigh that up: either come to the IPL or take the time off. So I had put myself at a high price for it to be really worthwhile coming here. I didn’t expect to even get picked up. The fact that I did was quite a shock,” he said.