Nottinghamshire batsman James Taylor has been called into the England Test squad for the second Test against South Africa at Headingly this week. Taylor's inclusion follows the withdrawal of Ravi Bopara, whose absence was attributed to unspecified personal reasons.
National selector Geoff Miller said of the selection: "We have made one change to the squad, with James Taylor replacing Ravi Bopara who is unavailable for selection due to personal reasons. James has been part of the England (2/1 To Beat South Africa) Performance Programme for a number of years and has performed consistently for England Lions and now has an opportunity to step up and experience the Test environment."
Taylor's addition was the only change to the 13-man squad following the humbling innings defeat to the South Africans (2/1 To Beat England) last week. Bopara struggled in that match, scoring zero and 22, departing cheaply in both innings, and whilst personal reasons were cited for his absence, Taylor will be working hard to lay claim to the number six position which has proved far from fruitful for England lately.
As well as Bopara, Eoin Morgan and Jonny Bairstow have all been tried at six, but with none of them taking a firm grip on the spot, Taylor (8/1 Top England Batsman) was given the opportunity to show his ability following some strong performances for the Lions squad.
England (5/6 Draw No Bet) squad for second Investec Test against South Africa at Headingley: AJ Strauss (Middlesex, captain), JM Anderson (Lancashire), IR Bell (Warwickshire), TT Bresnan (Yorkshire), SCJ Broad (Nottinghamshire), AN Cook (Essex) ST Finn (Middlesex), G Onions (Durham), KP Pietersen (Surrey), MJ Prior (Sussex, wicketkeeper), GP Swann (Nottinghamshire), JWA Taylor (Nottinghamshire), IJL Trott (Warwickshire).