Young England off-spinner Bashir said he has experienced a surreal couple of months after making his Test debut on the tour of India earlier this year, which is something he will cherish for a long time. Bashir will make his debut in the ongoing County Championship season for Somerset in their second match against Surrey, after taking 17 wickets in his first three Test matches for England, where he made his debut in the second game at Visakhapatnam. County Championship 2024: Joe Root To Make Red-Ball Return for Yorkshire After Two Years.

"The winter's been quite the experience starting with the Lions out in Abu Dhabi on that two-week camp and then from there getting called up to play for your country. It's been such a surreal couple of months and one that I'll cherish for a long time."

"I got picked up from pretty much nowhere -- Somerset came to me out of the blue and so has England as well. I'm just so grateful for the opportunity and so thankful to God because without him none of this would have happened," said Bashir to BBC Points West.

His entry into India was delayed initially due to visa issues, but eventually joined the team in the middle of the first Test at Hyderabad, before his debut in Visakhapatnam.

"It was quite special. I remember walking out there and I was shaking -- I was like, 'I'm walking out with Ben Stokes, Joe Root here, this is the experience'. I was nervous until I had the ball in my hand and then I felt at home. I've been bowling a cricket ball for years and I sort of knew that in the back of my head and after I bowled that first bowl, I was on it," he recalled.

Bashir had been the 12th man for Somerset in their drawn County Championship match against Kent last week but is keen to ace the challenge of bowling in England after doing well in India.

"I'm still young, I'm still learning the game. I'm quite excited for what's to come. I know bowling in County Championship conditions in this rain is part of the experience as well. I'm still trying to develop my skills. Bowling with different paces, different trajectories I need to work on, but also pace changes because the ball doesn't spin as much as it did in India so you've got to beat the batsman in different ways."

Bashir had been taken in by Somerset after being released by Surrey as a teenager and though the side has an experienced left-arm spinner in Jack Leach, the young off-spinner is fine with moving to another side on loan to get game time for his development as a young spin bowler.

"It's not easy being a young kid and then getting told you're not quite good enough to make it. Getting up from that and knowing if you want something that bad you want to put in work for it, that's sort of what I did. I really made an effort to improve myself as a cricketer and tried to prove a point." Jason Roy Reveals Reason Behind Skipping IPL 2024, Says ‘Had To Put My Mindset and Body First’.

"It's still a conversation that we're trying to deal with. We know that Leachy is the main spinner here and I understand that it's just trying to find a way to play some first-team cricket if that's here or maybe elsewhere. Have to have a few discussions but if that's the best way moving forward then I'm sure Somerset will be able to cater for that."

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Apr 12, 2024 05:04 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website