James Taylor determined to get back into Test squad
England batsman James Taylor is determined to get back into the Test squad after hitting his maiden One-Day International hundred in the third game of the ongoing series against Australia in Manchester on Tuesday.
Riding high on Taylor’s hundred, England defeated Australia by 93 runs in the third game to peg a win back in the series, which is poised at 2-1 in favor of the visitors.
Having made his Test debut against South Africa in the 2012 Basil D'Oliveira Trophy, Taylor scored only 48 runs in two matches.
However, in the ODI format Taylor has been impressive this year, amassing 489 runs from 15 games at an average of 44.45 with one hundred and three fifties under his belt.
Though he likes to bat up the order, Taylor is ready to bat in any position to make it back into the Test team.
“Like (Moeen Ali), I’m a very versatile player as well, and I’m willing to bat anywhere in the team," he said following the match at Old Trafford.
“I love batting at three and four and I’m glad I got my opportunity.
“The higher I bat in the order, the bigger runs potentially I can score.”
Taylor made an unmemorable ODI debut in 2011 against Ireland in Dublin and managed to score just one run from 14 balls.
The 25-year-old’s second chance also came against Ireland in 2013, but he could only score 25 runs from 42 balls, failing to impress the selectors.
Taylor did not let go of the opportunity when he was given a third chance in 2014, by scoring back-to-back fifties against Sri Lanka in Colombo and Pallekele.
Since then, Taylor has been given an extended run in ODIs, with his previous career-best knock of 98 coming against Australia in the 2015 World Cup match at Melbourne.
With the Old Trafford pitch offering some turn on Tuesday, Taylor appeared satisfied that he was able to perform with the bat against Australia just ahead of England's tour to UAE against Pakistan lined up for the winter.
“People have seen over the last few years I’ve got a lot to offer in one-day cricket especially, but I think that was a nice little reminder on a turning pitch, where it wasn’t easy to score off the slower bowlers … (they were) similar conditions that we’re going to have in the winter in the UAE.”
Hoping to get a call up into the Test side, Taylor is confident that he will be able to tackle the spin-friendly conditions in the UAE.
“I know we’ll be playing on similar wickets against some good spin bowlers in the UAE, and I’m desperate to get back into the Test side.”
Taylor’s likely competitor for Test selection is Yorkshire’s Gary Ballance, who scored 165 and 91 in his latest first-class games after being dropped midway during the 2015 Ashes.
In the ongoing ODI series against Australia, Taylor is currently the highest run-scorer with 193 runs from three matches, coming at an average of 64.33.
© Cricket World 2015