Bowler Lauren Filer admits she is “grateful for every moment” after an impressive ODI debut in England’s seven-wicket win over Sri Lanka.
The 22-year-old starred alongside fellow debutants Mahika Gaur and Maia Bouchier as the hosts cruised to victory in the first ODI at Chester-le-Street.
Filer took three wickets, having last featured for England in their Ashes Test against Australia in June, and is enjoying being back among the team for the 50-over contests against Sri Lanka.
“I’m just taking it in my stride, everything’s happened quite quickly this year and I wasn’t expecting it to happen this year at all,” she told the post-match press conference.
“I’m just grateful for every moment I get on the pitch and, if I have to sit on the bench for a series, I don’t mind that at all, it means I’m part of the team.
“We’ve got a great group of players, so that does sometimes mean you have to sit on the bench, but you’ve just got to do your part for the team.”
All three of England’s debutants made their mark as the hosts dominated the first ODI, which took place just two days after they had lost the T20 leg of the series.
Gaur and Filer picked up three wickets each, as did Sarah Glenn, while Alice Capsey picked up the other as the visitors were all out for 106.
Tammy Beaumont and Emma Lamb put on a 61-run opening partnership on their return to the ODI squad before Bouchier hit the winning runs with a mammoth 32 overs to spare.
Reflecting on the game and her contributions, Filer said: “It was really good. I probably didn’t feel at my best, you have those days and you’ve just got to power through.
“It was great to pick up a few wickets and it was nice to get the win at the end.
“Mahika obviously bowled very, very well, she’s got skill and swing at the start of the innings then came back on and bowled a beauty to get them all out.
“Then Bouchier at the end was great, it’s nice for all three of us to contribute in some sort of way.”
Filer took her first ODI wicket when Hasini Perera feathered the ball through to Amy Jones behind the stumps.
Her debut got even better with two wickets in the 20th over. Kavisha Dilhari was caught behind, with Jones making a fine grab to her right, before Filer dismissed Nilakshi de Silva the very next ball in a similar fashion.
What a bowling performance 😍
— England Cricket (@englandcricket) September 9, 2023
The crowd cheered the 22-year-old as Oshadi Ranasinghe eventually defended the hat-trick ball in an atmosphere that reminded Filer of the Test earlier this year.
“It kind of brought me back to the Test match a little bit. I know Emma Lamb said that on the pitch because there was a part in the Test where everyone was clapping,” she added.
“It was nice to have that and reminisce on that. It was probably in my head, ‘Just don’t bowl a wide’, but it was great and to have that opportunity was good.
“The third one was probably my favourite, just because you don’t expect to get one straight after you’ve got another one, so it was nice. Jonesy did also take a good catch for the second one so that was good.”