He might not have made his first appearance for England’s Visually Impaired Cricket team just yet but that isn’t stopping Ashton-under-Lyne’s Jason Aughton from targeting World Cup glory.
Aughton is part of a 17-man squad under coach Ross Hunter (pictured above) that will head to South Africa next month to take on the best teams from across the globe in the 2014 Blind World Cup.
The 28-year-old joined the national setup in July and is still waiting for his chance to pull on the England shirt, making the call up to Hunter’s squad all the more surprising.
But he hopes that opportunity will come in South Africa and that he can return calling himself a world champion.
“I think we can go out there and win it if I’m honest,” said Aughton, with England kicking things off against Sri Lanka on November 27.
“I have just joined the squad and not had the chance to play for the national side yet so it’s amazing for me.
“It was in July that I first got called up and then I found out I was in the World Cup squad in August but I feel like I’ve slotted right in; it’s a small community and we all know each other from the domestic game.
“We all know that India and Pakistan are very strong teams and beating them is going to be hard but I’m not going out there to make up the numbers and none of the team feels that way either.”
Aughton was born with Wegener’s granulomatosis and completely lost his sight when he was just 16 years old.
However, after getting into visually impaired cricket at 26 he has found that it is not only a chance to play top-level sport but also to meet other people who have been through similar struggles to him.
“For me to be a part of this is a dream come true, to have the chance to get my first cap for my country and play in a World Cup in the process is incredible,” he added.
“I came into cricket quite late because I was into music, so I was 26 before I started.
“I’d heard of Visually Impaired cricket but didn’t pay much attention to it but now I’m playing it’s amazing.
“I think the best part is that I have the chance to meet people who are going through similar things to me.”
ECB is an inclusive organisation providing support and a pathway for disability cricket from grassroots to elite.
Follow the England Visually Impaired Squad in South Africa here.