Matt Prior is ready to prove he is England’s No.1 wicketkeeper by helping Sussex get off to a flying start to the season.
Prior lost his place in the Test side during the disastrous Ashes tour to Australia during the winter and faces a battle with Jos Buttler to win his place back for the Sri Lanka series in June.
The 32-year-old admitted he had not enjoyed playing cricket for the majority of 2013 but Sussex coach Mark Robinson has seen signs of the hunger and desire over the last few weeks which made him the best wicketkeeper-batsman in the world just 12 months ago Prior returned to Hove for pre-season training two weeks ago and will play for Sussex in the Emirates Airline T20 tournament in Dubai tomorrow having flown out to the UAE with the rest of the squad on Tuesday.
The former Brighton College pupil is likely to be available for the opening two months of the county season as he tries to rediscover his form with the bat and Robinson is excited by the prospect.
Robinson said: “It’s great to have Matt with us for the whole of pre-season. We’ve never had him for this length of time before as he’s always been resting after an England tour so it’s been a real bonus.
“He was in every day working hard back at Hove and you can see he is massively motivated. I think the amount of high pressure games England players play takes it toll both physically and mentally but Matt has had a break now and is hungry to do well for us.”