21st Jul, 2018

Clarke tipped to push for Test call-up

Rob George 10th Jan, 2018

TALENTED Pears batsman Joe Clarke is among a trio of young batsmen identified by England head coach Trevor Bayliss as a potential contender to break into the senior squad.

Worcestershire batsman Clarke, Lancashire’s Liam Livingstone and Essex’s Dan Lawrence have been named by Bayliss as talent to be given a chance ‘sooner rather than later.

Clarke made his first senior appearance in England colours last month and scored 45 in a two-day friendly with a Cricket Australia X1 in Perth.

Speaking before England’s 4-0 Ashes defeat was rubber-stamped with an innings and 123 run defeat on Monday, Bayliss said “There’s been some chat over the past few series about how we can start getting in some of those younger players.

“We’ve seen Craig Overton and Tom Curran make their debuts on this (Ashes) tour and Mason Crane as well.

“From a batting point of view, we want to see some of the younger guys in England pushing a little harder to get in.

“Livingstone, Lawrence and Clarke have all been mentioned in the past six months or so as being the next guys coming through.

“We need an opportunity to put them in. Is this the opportunity? And we have to ask if the guys here in the Ashes squad have done enough to warrant further selection.

“You want to see young guys putting pressure on. It’s important for the team’s success over the long term that they are given a chance sooner rather than later.”

Clarke has been named in the England Lions squad for the tour of the West Indies next month but could be named in the squad for two Test matches in New Zealand which will be announced this evening.

Meanwhile, Moeen Ali is being rested for England’s T20 Tri-Series with Australia and New Zealand next month.

The Pears all-rounder is one of England’s three-format players and will sit out the series from February 7 to 21 along with Jonny Bairstow.

Moeen will feature in the five-match ODI series against Australia from January 14 to 28 which follows on from the Ashes.

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