Taylor - It was about time
Lions skipper leads the way with century
Last Updated: 11/05/12 8:20pm
James Taylor: reminded England selectors of his ability with century for second-string Lions
James Taylor's hundred put the England Lions in charge against West Indies, and did his own international aspirations no harm either.
The Lions captain is no more than a stalking horse for England's first-choice middle order at present.
But with the squad for the first Test at Lord's set to be announced on Sunday morning, his 118 out of the Lions' 341 all out on day two of four at Northampton was nonetheless a timely contribution on two levels.
"I'm delighted to get a hundred for the Lions, and I hope I can kick on from here. I'm really pleased. It's about time, to be fair - it's been a tough season so far."
James Taylor Quotes of the week
It certainly ensured the Lions put the tourists in a spot of bother - establishing a first-innings lead of 194 on the back of his century and 50 from Jonny Bairstow, before the Windies stumbled to 28-3 second time round.
On both a personal note and from his team's perspective, Taylor had plenty of reason for satisfaction.
"I'm delighted to get a hundred for the Lions, and I hope I can kick on from here," he said.
"I'm really pleased. It's about time, to be fair - it's been a tough season so far.
"I've scored some gritty runs, and it was ideal to score some at the right time.
"I dug in, and I think we put on 100 for the last two wickets - which has put us in a really strong position for the rest of the game."
Taylor and Bairstow's century stand for the sixth wicket took place in front of the Test selectors, and a clutch of England and Wales Cricket Board top brass, in attendance at this match.
The Nottinghamshire batsman was not about to be put off by whose eyes were watching his progress, but was happy to have put on a show for them.
"That was the plan," he said. "What an opportunity, to play for the Lions, and show the selectors what we can do - against Test opposition.
"I'm glad I put my hand up today."
Taylor knew ECB chairman Giles Clarke, chief executive David Collier and coach Andy Flower were among the spectators.
"We saw them all around at certain points of the day," he said. "But you don't really think about the selectors when you're batting. You just think about the next ball, and trying to play it.
"It's still always nice to score runs in front of them, show what I can do - especially against a Test bowling attack."