Boom rookie Ollie Davies said he’d use his selection in the NSW Marsh One-Day Cup squad to improve an important part of his game by simply sitting back and absorbing the actions of the players he’d grown up supporting.
Davies, who made his KFC Big Bash League debut for Sydney Thunder this summer, was elated by the “faith” the state selectors had shown by including him in a star-studded 13-man Blues squad.
The 20-year-old, who made headlines after hitting five consecutive sixes against the Melbourne Renegades, said being named in the squad for Monday’s match against Victoria at North Sydney Oval was an opportunity to watch and learn how Steve Smith and other established players prepare before an innings.
“It is a good opportunity to be around the likes of Steve Smith and Pat Cummins, which is going to be a very good experience,” said Davies.
“One thing I think I can improve on is my pre-game preparation and routine. I don’t think I have locked it in yet, and it will be good to see what some of these top-class players - guys like Steve Smith, Daniel Hughes, Moises Henriques, Kurtis Pattison - and how they do it. I’ll then see if any of it will work for me.”
Davies, who set the BBL alight in his first two matches with some powerful shots – his 90 runs consisted of eight sixes and two fours at a strike rate of 152.54 - was adamant he doesn’t feel as though he needs to whack every ball over the boundary.
“I put a bit of pressure on myself in the last few Big Bash games,” he said.
“I wanted to do so well; and was playing in front of a lot of people, which was something I hadn’t done before. I just put unnecessary pressure on myself, which is all learning and all experience.”
The former Australia under-19 representative added he’d also faced some harsh realities during the BBL that will help to develop his game.
“I had a pretty decent start to the tournament in my first couple of games, but it also brought me down a level at the backend when I didn’t do as well as I would have liked,” he said.
“There was a good learning experience for me on how to cope with the highs and lows of the game - and I think that will put me in better stead.”