London: After notching up his maiden Test hundred on the second day of the 2019 Ashes, England opener Rory Burns credited a meeting with members of the 2005 Ashes-winning team for inspiring him to produce something special.
Burns racked up an unbeaten 125 to put England firmly ahead on day two in Edgbaston, as they closed out play on 267/4, just 17 runs behind Australia's first-innings total.
Following those efforts, Burns revealed an interaction with the legends of the 2005 series, when England famously reclaimed the urn after 18 years.
"We connected the night before and I was literally ready to run through a brick wall at that stage and get right in amongst it," Burns said after play on Friday.
"To be an Ashes cricketer in the first place is a wonderful thing."
With this knock, Burns has somewhat redeemed himself after the embarrassment of last week, when England was dismissed for 85 in the first innings of their only Test against Ireland at Lord's, although they did eventually go on to win the match.
Burns, who bagged identical scores of 6 in both innings of the Test, but the turnaround down to retaining belief in his abilities, an ICC report on Saturday said.
"I buried my head in the sand to all of the comments, media and that sort of stuff," he said. "I just tried to get myself around people that back me - team-mates, coaches - I tried to back my own skills."
Burns also had a session with Neil Stewart, his mentor, and brother of former England wicketkeeper Alec Stewart. "I went to someone who's known me since the age of six - he's been coaching me," Burns said.
"I just asked him what he reckoned. He gleaned out a few thoughts for me, and I just tried to put those into practice. I tried to get a bat in hand as much as I could over four or five days between the Ireland Test and this match," he added.