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Moeen Ali is an inspiration for me, says Joe Denly

Denly is a part of the England Test squad for the series in Sri Lanka.

Joe Denly
Joe Denly of Kent celebrates his hattrick. (Photo by Charlie Crowhurst/Getty Images)

Joe Denly was recently added to England’s limited-overs side after Liam Dawson injured himself ahead of the fourth ODI against Sri Lanka at Pallekele. The all-rounder who plays for Kent finds inspiration in Moeen Ali after the latter’s progress in all three formats making him one among the best for England in recent time.

Denly, who was known merely for his skills with the bat, has developed his bowling prowess thus picking up 57 wickets in last year for Kent across the three formats. This is on similar lines with his teenage friend in Ali, who broke into England side as a replacement for Graeme Swann, their premium off-spinner at that time.

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Ali is an inspiration

Denly has always been in the reckoning with his former county captain and now the national selector Ed Smith, keeping an eye on his abilities as an all-rounder.

The 32-year-old sees Moeen as a source of inspiration given how he has evolved his game to be rated as the best off-spinner for England in recent times. “It is funny how things change. He’s probably one of the best in the world now. He is certainly an inspiration, not just for me but for a lot of people.”

Denly also reminisces his days at England’s U19 when the duo used to enjoy their time together. “I was talking to Mo yesterday about when we used to play England Under-19s together…we used to take the mick out of each other’s bowling,” Denly was quoted as saying by Yorkshire Post.  “We were both batters back then. We used to roll our arms over in the nets, but I thought I was better than Mo and he thought he was better than me,” he said.

Denly confident of his skills

He feels more comfortable with his skills and is enjoying his role as an all-rounder now. “I’ve become a lot more confident and it’s something I really enjoy doing. It’s about trying to develop that even more now and be known as more than just a batter who bowls a bit,” he further said.

When given the opportunity, the seasoned campaigner will now want to make a mark in both the formats as he is already a part of the Test squad for the tour of Sri Lanka.

Get the latest Cricket News and updates from Sri Lanka vs England series, Match Predictions, Fantasy Cricket Tips and lots more on CricTracker.com.

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