England's Dawid Malan says being No 1-ranked T20I batsman does not guarantee him a place in the XI
England left-hander Dawid Malan is the top-ranked T20I batsman in the world but says that does not assure him of a spot in Eoin Morgan's XI; watch the first T20I between South Africa and England on Sky Sports Cricket from 3.30pm on Friday, November 27
Last Updated: 19/11/20 8:04pm
Dawid Malan admits that he is not guaranteed a place in the England team despite being the No 1 batsman in the ICC's T20I rankings.
The 33-year-old left-hander has made an exceptional start to his international career in the shortest format, going past 50 in half of his 16 T20I innings, including a century against New Zealand last year, to surpass Babar Azam, Aaron Finch and KL Rahul to reach the top of the batting ranks.
However, with England's white-ball batting depth as strong as it has ever been and competition for places getting ever fiercer with two T20 World Cups in the next two years, Malan is not taking his inclusion in the XI for granted.
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"I've said before actually, it's something that I'll enjoy more probably once I've retired," he said of his No 1 ranking. "It's not something I'm really looking at right now.
"It doesn't guarantee you runs, it doesn't guarantee you a spot in the team.
"I'll look back at it with fond memories but I think with anything, the higher your ranking, the more you get looked at and the more pressure there is on you; that's something I'm trying not to let affect me by not worrying about where I am in terms of one or 20 or 100 in the world.
"I can't control selection and things like that. All I can do is put in the work in the nets and if I get the opportunity to play, keep scoring as many runs as I can to put pressure on the guys that have the spots.
"Every opportunity is gold when you're trying to break into this team. I can only do what I can control and I hope it is good enough."
England white-ball tour to South Africa schedule
- Nov 27: First T20I, Cape Town (4pm start)
- Nov 29: Second T20I, Paarl (12.30pm start)
- Dec 1: Third T20I, Cape Town (4pm start)
- Dec 4: First ODI, Cape Town (11am start)
- Dec 6: Second ODI, Paarl (8am start)
- Dec 9: Third ODI, Cape Town (11am start)
- Dec 10: England return from South Africa
Speaking to Rob Key for The Hussain and Key Cricket Show, he added: "I don't think you ever 'deserve' a spot. When you put in some consistent performances, you'd like to get an opportunity. Obviously, some of those opportunities that I got were when people were rested so it's natural that those guys will come back in.
"To be fair, I'll bat anywhere in the top three, four, bat, six, seven - I'll bat anywhere to get a game!"
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This week it was announced that England would tour Pakistan for the first time in 16 years, with Morgan's side scheduled to play two T20Is in Karachi.
Having played for Islamabad United in this year's Pakistan Super League earlier in the year, Malan is one of the few England players to have experienced playing in Pakistan and believes the country's authorities have done all they can to make it safe for visiting players.
"The Pakistan government and cricket board have done everything in their power, in the times I've been there, to make it as safe as possible and the security detail and the protocols that you have to go through are unbelievable there," he said.
"You don't feel unsafe in Pakistan when you're part of these protocols that they're putting in place with all the armoured vehicles. As long as the standard of that stays the same then I can't see too much happening. They've been fantastic in the past so hopefully that continues."
Watch every game of England's white-ball tour to South Africa live on Sky Sports Cricket, starting with the first T20 international from 3.30pm on Friday, November 27.