Shah - I was a bit shocked
Owais Shah admitted he was surprised to be included in England's 15-man squad for the two-Test series in India.
Last Updated: 29/09/08 4:59pm
Owais Shah told Sky Sports News that he was surprised to be included in England's 15-man squad for the two-Test series in India.
With the announcement on Saturday that former captain Michael Vaughan would not be going on tour there was a two-way battle for one place.
In the end it was Shah who got the nod, the Middlesex man beating out Ravi Bopara, who was selected in the squad for the final Test of the summer against South Africa.
For the 29-year-old right-hander it will mean a return to a country where he made his Test debut back in 2006, scoring 88 and 38 in Mumbai.
"I was kind of surprised really," Shah told Sky Sports. "I got a phone call from Geoff Miler this morning saying I was selected and I was a bit shocked.
"I wasn't expecting it but I'm very pleased that I've been selected to go to India as part of the Test team.
"I'm just really happy to get the opportunity to play for England. Hopefully I can take that chance this winter."
Shah is now hoping he will get the chance to impress in the sub-continent, even if he admits it is a tough place to tour.
"I had a reasonable Test match," he said about his Test debut. "I quite enjoyed the challenges of the sub-continent.
"Obviously you've got the spin bowlers over there being very good in Anil Kumble and Harbhajan Singh.
"The conditions are also quite tough. It's very warm out there and you have to take plenty of fluids on board. I was subject to a lot of cramps the last time I played there."
With a place in the Test party Shah, who is also part of England's one-day squad for the Stanford Series and the seven-match series in India, is now looking ahead to a busy winter.
But although the Ashes are looming large on the horizon, the Karachi-born batsman is refusing to contemplate playing against Australia next summer.
"Next summer is miles away for me," he added. "I just want to try and impress on the one-day tour this winter, and hopefully the Test tour.
"I'm just taking it one series at a time. Looking too far ahead is not the right way to go about things. I just want to try and do well and then worry about Australia next summer."