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Why wont England pick James Taylor?

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Winning the first test of the Ashes series in Cardiff has done little for the clamour for change and after being disposed of tamely at Lords, the media and public’s calls for change were adhered to after Gary Ballance was dropped in favour of Jonny Bairstow for the test match at Edgbaston.

It is likely that by the time this piece has gone out, England will be 2-1 up in the series after a thrilling couple of days in Birmingham has seen them on the verge of victory and there is little to suggest the selectors have been proved wrong as they plumped for the talented Bairstow to replace the horribly out of form Ballance.

But for many England followers, the surprising continued exclusion of Nottinghamshire batsman James Taylor from the test match arena has baffled many and no one seems to be able to put a finger on the reason’s why. Consistently he has played a major role in the County Championship for Notts and his 291 in the recent match against Sussex, showed just what the selectors are missing.

There is no doubt that Bairstow has been in outstanding form too and with both already having had the chance to play in test matches for England, they have since gone away to work on their game with one eye on a future call-up. It was thought amongst many that Taylor was at the top of tree but with Ballance’s awful form, it was the name of Bairstow that was on the lips of the selectors and no one can really begrudge him that chance. It’s just Taylor does seem to not be given that chance and we have to ask why?

It’s not only in test matches that he has been discarded, as over the winter he was consistently England’s best one day player an yet when the new breed were given the chance in the New Zealand series he again found himself on the sidelines as 12th man. Why?

as we have mentioned, little is known as to why players keep leapfrogging the diminutive Taylor and we have to ask is his height a concern? At just 5ft 6in tall he is not the tallest and is probably one of the smallest around the County Championship scene but it doesn’t seem to cause him much concern around the domestic scene and it hasn’t in any of the international series he has been a big part of so it cannot be that, can it?

He is also highly thought of as a captain, leading both Nottinghamshire and the England Lions and has always conducted himself admirably both on and off the field. So his attitude cannot be called into question either. He has been touted amongst some as a future England captain should he get a regular place in either England side, so again, there seems to be no issue here.

So we come to the reason, some are jumping too and that he has been earmarked as a straight replacement for the stylish Ian Bell in test matches and even though he is in a bit of a trough, form wise at the moment, he still remains England’s classiest batsmen and is likely to hover around the England test side for a while longer yet. At just 25 years of age, Taylor has time on his hands to wait but he cannot remain on the sidelines forever.

As for the one day side, he seems to have been moved aside for now and must wait or his chance if an injury or loss of form comes up for a current incumbent. He will no doubt remain around the England scene and will want to take the chance with both hands when the opportunity arises. In the meantime, he will have to keep working hard at Notts to keep himself at the top of the list and hope that no one again leapfrogs the man they call ‘Titch’

james taylor Jonny Bairstow

About Andy Moore

Andy is Chief Editor of The Sports Lowdown and a sports journalist by profession having written for both print publications such as The Sun, The Rugby Paper as well as various online digital sites such as The Aviva Premiership, The Women's Super League plus many many more.

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