England left-hander Gary Ballance has admitted that a dinner with skipper Alastair Cook helped get his focus back in the game after he came in the news for his shirtless act in an inebriated state at a Nottingham pub after the conclusion of the first Test at Trent Bridge. (India in England: Five talking points ahead of Old Trafford Test)
The batsman shouted "I'm not a Test cricketer, I'm just a drunken b*****d!" as he celebrated five days of hard work incuding a gritty half century. (England seek repeat win as India ponder options)
"On the first morning when I turned up at Lord's I was a bit nervous and embarrassed," Ballance told 'Mirror'. Alastair Cook helped Ballance to get his focus back. (Learnt a lot from Laxman: Rahane)
"It had come out and I felt disappointed I had let the lads down the night before a Test match, which was embarrassing and not what you want," said Ballance, who has scored over 400 runs (402) in the series so far.
"Cooky took me out for some food with Joe Root and Matt Prior and just said, 'These things happen and that in a few days you would be laughing about it. It will all be forgotten about. I don't now whether it has all been forgotten about but... I have to move on from it. It was not really a telling off? it was more a slap on the wrist and them saying, "Don't do it again.' It might have been good for me because I felt under a bit of pressure coming into that second Test and I put in a good performance and proved some people wrong."
"I was nervous what my parents would think but they were very understanding. I think they cut out one of the pages and framed one of the pictures.