June 19 2013 Latest news:
Thursday, February 7, 2013
England remain wary of the threat posed by Ross Taylor even though the former New Zealand captain is taking his first tentative steps back into the fold.
Taylor’s breakdown of communications with Kiwi coach Mike Hesson, after he was stripped of the captaincy last year, has been well-documented.
But after missing New Zealand’s Test and limited-overs tour of South Africa, the destructive batsman is in the squad again for three Twenty20s - the first is on Saturday - and then three one-day internationals which follow.
Taylor was this morning back at nets with his international team-mates, including his successor as captain Brendon McCullum, for the first time in months.
There was no sign of frostiness in the camp and Taylor even had time for a quick chat with Hesson at Eden Park.
However the 28-year-old is welcomed back, England are well aware of his match-winning potential.
Taylor’s near opposite number Eoin Morgan made that clear today.
“He is a big danger, a very successful one-day and Twenty20 cricketer and someone we look to as a possible threat in this series,” said the Irishman.
As for Taylor, it appears to be a case of so far, so good.
“I can’t speak for anyone else, I can only say what I see myself and I haven’t seen anything untoward towards me,” he said, of his welcome back to the squad.
“I’ve just been acting like my normal self, so I don’t think there’s anything there.
“There’s probably still people outside the team who want to stir it up a little bit.
“We can’t control that.
“There’s a few cameras here ... and I’m sure they’re here for a reason.”
England, meanwhile, had a day away from the training ground after yesterday’s warm-up defeat against a New Zealand XI in Whangarei.
Morgan acknowledged that narrow setback was a disappointment, but added there was good reason to draw encouragement too.
“All our preparation matters and having a great test yesterday was brilliant for us,” he said.
“Often you go into warm-up games and dominate ... and we are looking forward to Saturday now.”