Sam Billings is looking to improve his wicketkeeping skills during the time spent with the Delhi Daredevils (DD), playing in the 10th edition of the Indian Premier League (IPL). Billings is one of the five wicketkeepers in the DD squad, but his services behind the wickets are not likely to be required any time soon. The English cricketer, meanwhile, is making most of the time to improve his skills as a wicketkeeper even though Jonny Bairstow (Tests) and Jos Buttler (limited-overs cricket) remain England’s first-choice men behind the wickets. Billings, meanwhile, is also enjoying his role as one of the senior batsmen in the side. FULL CRICKET SCORECARD: Delhi Daredevils (DD) vs Kings XI Punjab (KXIP), IPL 2017, Match 15
“Quinton’s absence is a massive loss for us. He is a phenomenal player and one of the best in world cricket at the moment. I am looking to fill those big boots of his, and I have every confidence that I can do it. I have had a couple of decent starts without going on, but I am hoping to be able to fuel DD to wins. We have a very exciting batting line-up this year as we saw the other night. So looking forward to it,” Billings was quoted as saying by IPLT20.com.
“I am not keeping here obviously. But at home, for my first-class county, I keep for every single game and I have kept for England once. I am looking to improve on that discipline while I am here. Like batting, keeping on the wickets here is quite different to home. I am looking forward to improving that as well,” the Delhi Daredevils cricketer said.
Billings added, “I had a similar kind of conundrum for England. Jos Buttler (England wicketkeeper) is one of the best in the world as well (and) obviously has the gloves. So, for me as a player, I am trying to offer as much as I can; trying to be one of the best fielders in the side as well. Luckily, I bat and as well as my fielding helps me get into the side. You try and offer as much as you can to the team. Rishabh Pant has kept fantastically well for last two games as well; we are just trying to help each other out and help the team as much as I can.”
“My role is to play my natural way and look to bat as long as I can to try and set it up for the power-hitters towards the end. The way I generally play, I bat for a substantial period of time (and) my strike-rate is similar to those power-hitters at the end. So I could always catch up. It’s just that last couple of games I haven’t got to that stage where I can express myself,” he further added.
Talking about Delhi’s batting line-up which boasts of several young batsmen, Billings said, “I am one of the old blokes in the top-order. It’s fantastic, we saw Rishabh Pant smack it all over the place. He is one of the best young cricketers in the world. Then there is Karun Nair who got 300 against England. Sanju (Samson), the way he played the other night, showed what he can do. Then we welcome back Shreyas (Iyer).”
“We have got depth in our batting and I am really looking forward to it (games). Hopefully, like I said, I am (also) looking to making a decent contribution personally,” he added.