Shah wants to cement England place

Source - sportinglife.com

Owais Shah has set his sights on finally cementing a place in the England one-day side after his half-century earned them a five-wicket Twenty20 win over West Indies at the Brit Oval.

England were struggling at 104 for five in pursuit of a 170 target and required 55 from the final five overs.

But Shah kept his nerve and finished on 55 not out from 35 balls to help Paul Collingwood clinch his first victory as limited overs skipper.

Shah made his England one-day debut in 2001 but has only played 18 internationals in the last six years and is hoping to be included in the side for forthcoming trio of 50 over games with the Windies starting at Lord's on Sunday.

The Middlesex batsman said: "I have been wanting to play an innings for England for a while especially in the one-day stuff. I am delighted.

"If I get the opportunity to go on from here, then great. I am just going to take it a game at a time and keep doing well if I can for England. If that means me cementing a spot, it couldn't be any more perfect.

"It would be great. The opportunity is there at the moment and you just have to take it. Whatever opportunity you get given, you just have to go out and try and grab it with both hands.

"That's my aim for the one-day series. I can't wait to play for England again and we will just have to see how the one-day series goes and take it from there."

Paul Collingwood paid tribute to the efforts of Shah and Dimitri Mascarenhas who helped him add 69 off 36 balls for the six wicket.

He said: "It was a fantastic innings by Owais. When you get a knock like that, it shows he has got finishing qualities which is what you want in any side.

"He picked and chose the right balls, stayed calm, chose his shots well and it was very impressive under quite a lot of pressure in difficult conditions.

"It was getting darker and darker out there. Owais and Dimitri played a couple of great innings at the end."

Collingwood praised his side for learning quickly after losing by 15 runs the previous evening when the Windies amassed 208 for eight.

He said: "It is a great feeling to get that first win as captain but I am just very proud of the boys and the effort they have put in during the past week.

"We learned a lot from last night's experience and spoke about that this morning. They learned a lot but went out there and did it on the park tonight and that is a real special thing.

"There were a lot of good things about last night as well. Our intent was fantastic and we were still positive and to get close to a massive total like that was a great effort.

"From the bowling and fielding point of view, we spoke about where we could improve and for the bowlers to go out after 24 hours and choose when to bowl slow balls and when to bowl 'death' balls was excellent and everything came right.

"It is a good West Indies Twenty20 side who can hit the ball out of the park at any time. I thought it was a great effort by a young set of boys."
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