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Sam Curran was really crucial for CSK this season

SA vs ENG : Sam Curran credits CSK stint for improving his T20 game

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Sam Curran, whose all-round performance helped England win the first T20I against South Africa, has stated that his stint with Chennai Super Kings this year has made him a better T20 player.

Things were not so good for Chennai Super Kings who endured their worst-ever IPL season, finishing at the seventh position on the points table after having made it to the playoffs every single time they participated in the past. It was a hard pill to swallow and a great indicator of the fact that the side had to make a host of changes to their line-up in the next season but Sam Curran was one of the biggest positives the side would want to retain next time.

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Not only the Surrey boy played all 14 matches, took 13 wickets, and averaged 23.25 with the bat at a strike rate of 131.91. Being used as a floater, Curran delivered what was asked and then some more, which held him in good stead for the series against South Africa. In the opening encounter on Friday, there was a clear demonstration of his performance for the men in yellow as he picked up three crucial wickets to help the English side take 1-0 series lead.

“I really enjoyed the IPL and feel I have taken my game to a different standard in terms of my learning,” Curran said in an interview. “I took a lot away from that group and coaching staff at Chennai. I feel my game has improved since I went there and I want to keep trying to improve and become a regular.”

Sam Curran ready to shoulder more responsibilities

After a really good Ireland series, David Willey and Reece Topley have been waiting in the wings for an opportunity but the CSK stint have ensured Curran getting the first preference as a left-arm seamer. Him sharing the new ball in the first T20 against South Africa further complicated the duo’s chances and Curran is happy to shoulder the responsibility well.

“I took the new ball and tried to set the tone for the team and obviously a wicket in the first over was pleasing,” Curran said. “I thought it was a really nice performance, using the skills I have been working on for the past year, and luckily enough it came out alright. Any time you’re asked to take the new ball in a T20 game for England is really great responsibility to have, to set the tone from ball one.

“I think it’s a really good team. You saw that [intra-squad] warm-up game, any of those players could have gone out and it would have been a good England team. The competition is really good and so when you do get in, you have to take those opportunities,” the left-arm seamer added.

The second T20I of the series will be played today (Sunday) at Newlands.