Fast bowler Tymal Mills, one of three players to sport the new Desert Vipers kit at the jersey launch on Monday, said he would be ready for the Desert Vipers' DP World ILT20 opener after a family crisis ruled him out of a spell in Australia's Big Bash League.
Mills was due to play for the Perth Scorchers but had to pull out when his daughter was taken ill. However, speaking just a day after arriving in Dubai to link up with his Desert Vipers team-mates, he said the trauma of that situation was now in the past and he was looking forward to getting back into action.
"My daughter was sick and in hospital for a few weeks, but she has recovered brilliantly," he said. "I am really fortunate they are out here with me, so that is nice, and I do not have anything to worry about at home and I can keep an eye on them here.
"It was really good of the team to facilitate that so I can focus on the cricket now. Unfortunately, I missed the Big Bash League (with Perth Scorchers as) I was supposed to arrive here with seven or eight games under my belt.
So, I need to take this week, to get up to speed again. But you do not forget (how to bowl) -- hopefully!" said Mills, with a smile on his face. "And come game one I will be ready to go."
The 30 year-old left-arm quick was part of England's ICC T20 World Cup-winning squad at the back end of 2022 but that joy was tempered by the knowledge he did not feature during the tournament.
And Mills said it meant he was determined to use the DP World ILT20, together with future cricket that follows, to remind the England selectors of his credentials in the shortest international format.
"It was disappointing not to play (in the T20 World Cup)," he said. "It was brilliant to be a part of the squad, but as any player will tell you, you want to be in the eleven, you do not want to be on the side-lines.
I would have rather been out there with the boys, and we had a great four or five weeks in Australia and obviously a very successful one as well. "I am looking forward to getting back and playing some regular cricket now.
I have got this tournament then maybe the PSL (Pakistan Super League) after that, so I am just looking at stacking some games together and hopefully having some success and, moving forward, I hope to get back in the (England T20 International) playing eleven."
Mills said he also expected to be entrusted with the tough overs at the back-end of the bowling innings, when the opposition looks to accelerate - and he confirmed he was happy to take on that role if asked.
"I have not had those chats (with the coaches and the captain) yet," he said. "(But) I am happy to fill whatever role the team wants. I always like bowling in those big situations. That is why I am here.
It is what I like to do. It is what my skill-set is favoured towards. Whatever they want me to do, I will certainly give it my best." Speaking at the jersey launch event in which he appeared alongside captain Colin Munro and UAE all-rounder Ali Naseer, Mills said he was confident the Desert Vipers had a good chance of winning the tournament.
"We are certainly here to win it," he said. "Every team starts from scratch, from zero, and only one team can win. I have been lucky enough to play in some winning sides over the last couple of years.
It would be a great feeling to come here and lift the trophy and have a little party afterwards, and hopefully we will have that to come." Reflecting on the Desert Vipers squad Mills said he was impressed with the group of players who have been brought together.
Mills is known for his impact bowling in the death overs, and said he expects to play a similar role for the Desert Vipers. And when asked about the abundance of left-arm quicks on the squad, he said: "You cannot go wrong with a left-armer!
Also, it gives Colin Munro and James Foster the flexibility to chop and change. "Sheraz Ahmad, one of our UAE players, is a left-arm fast bowler, as well (as myself, Ruben Trumpelmann and Sheldon Cottrell), so I think we have four left-arm seamers in the squad.
"(It's) always good to have variety in your bowling attack. Selfishly I want to play every game (and) I do not want to sit on the side-lines. I will leave those big decisions up to the coaches."