The Somerset contingent within the Young Lions squad will be getting the benefit of some considerable international experience this week.
The squad, which includes George Bartlett, Ben Green and Tom Banton are currently training at the National Cricket Performance Centre in Loughborough, and are working with Durham captain Paul Collingwood and Sussex bowling coach Jon Lewis. In addition to this, they will be joined today by former England batsman James Taylor.
The former Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire player has been invited to share his experiences and expertise and his involvement completes a trio who share exactly 350 international caps – and that’s before adding the wealth of experience of full-time ECB coaches such as Graham Thorpe, Peter Such and Bruce French.
Former Somerset Head Coach Andy Hurry, who is now Young Lions Head Coach, explained the importance of the current training camp: “This week is the first opportunity for us to have contact with the players this winter leading into the series in India. One of our fundamental aims is to introduce them to the challenges of playing cricket in the sub-continent, and James Taylor is the ideal man in that regard.
“He is just coming out of the international game, so he’s very current. We’re going to have a question and answer session with him to share his experiences regarding playing and touring in the sub-continent. He’ll also be involved in our session on batting against spin led by Graham Thorpe and Paul Collingwood.
“Having just returned from Bangladesh with Colly, I had an opportunity to see how effectively he works with players, so I’m really excited to have him with us. The same goes for Jon Lewis, who has international experience to draw from, including bowling for England in the sub-continent. He is also a very highly regarded as a coach after his work with Sussex.”
Hurry relished his experience of the senior England set-up during their one-day series in Bangladesh and is keen to share that knowledge with the Young Lions squad, in which 10 counties are represented. “It was very exciting for me to see how Team England operate, how Trevor Bayliss and Paul Farbrace work together, and the environment they’ve developed there,” he said. “I can share that with the Under 19’s ahead of what is going to be an exciting and challenging winter for us all.”
The Young Lions programme this winter includes a three-week trip to Dubai before Christmas followed by a tour of India in the New Year.
Young Lions (for training camps in Loughborough, Dubai, Nov/Dec): Max Holden (Middlesex), Harry Brook (Yorkshire), George Bartlett (Somerset), Josh Dell (Worcestershire), Tom Banton (Somerset), Ben Green (Somerset), Ollie Pope (Surrey), Delray Rawlins (Sussex), Amar Virdi (Surrey), Josh Coughlin (Durham), Will Jacks (Surrey), Euan Woods (Surrey), Liam Banks (Warwickshire), Aaron Beard (Essex), George Panayi (Warwickshire), Jack Blatherwick (Nottinghamshire), George Scrimshaw (Worcestershire).