Ashes stick from Australia fans 'is good fun', says James Vince

Chris Stocks
Pivotal role: James Vince, in action in Adelaide, will bat at No3 in the First Test: Getty Images

James Vince says he is ready for the challenge of playing an away Ashes series after watching England’s last Test in Brisbane with the Barmy Army.

Vince was a surprise call-up into England’s squad after spending more than a year out of the team following his first, unsuccessful run of seven Tests during the 2016 home summer.

The 26-year-old will take on the pivotal No3 role come the start of the series at the Gabba on Thursday and, despite a Test average of 19.27 and a run of low scores in England’s three tour games, Vince is relishing the prospect of proving the doubters wrong over the coming weeks.

“I’m looking forward to it,” he said. “I think most of the guys are excited by the challenge. I think the occasion will help concentration-wise with what’s at stake. My game feels in pretty good order. It’s a great opportunity to stake your claim and try to become a Test regular.

“We know what to expect and that’s part of the reason you want to play in an away Ashes series. It’s good fun getting a bit of stick. If we can perform well and get them turning on their own team, that will be great.”

Vince sat among England’s travelling fans during the opening match of the last Ashes series in Australia in Brisbane, which ended in a 381-run defeat and paved the way for a 5-0 whitewash. But he has no trepidation about what is to come when he steps on to the field later this week.

“I think we know what to expect from the Aussie crowd,” he said. “A few of the guys who have experienced it got a fair bit of stick out there. But when we’re out in the middle, it’s about blocking it out and getting on with our game.

“Last time the Ashes was on, I was out here with the Lions and managed to get down to the game and sat with the Barmy Army. I’m looking forward to being on the other side of the fence and putting on a really good show.”