England’s National Selector Ed Smith has shared that England opener Jason Roy is a “more complete player now” than before and he can do good in the Test cricket as well. Jason Roy, however, got his maiden call-up in the 13-man squad for the one-off Test against Ireland at Lord’s. He had a great series in the World Cup where he scored 443 runs in seven innings and also named in the Team of the Tournament. Ed Smith backed Roy and believed that he would continue his form in the Tests as well.
“I think we’ve all seen him grow and improve as a player in white-ball cricket,” Smith told. “There’s never been any doubt about his talent, audacity or his presence at the crease – it’s fantastic. He’s also gained improved mastery and adaptability. I think he’s a more complete player now than he ever has been. It just felt like absolutely the right time for Jason to make his Test debut.”
“It’s no great secret the selectors have long been admirers of Jason. The big question with Jason Roy was when was the ideal time if he was going to make the move into Test cricket? Joe Root and I spoke at length months ago about the scenario in which Jason Roy finished the World Cup confident, full of runs and went straight into the Ashes and that’s what we’ve done. It feels like a really good time for Jason to join the Test team as an opener. He’s in and has our full backing,” he added.
“Going back to that first decision last May when coming in as selector it just felt like exactly the right time for Jos to come back into the Test team,” Smith further said. “Although I wouldn’t compare them because they are very different players and different people, in the same way it feels like the right time for Jason. He’s playing very well, growing and developing all the time and it’s an exciting prospect for us.”
“There is a challenge to build and grow on that rather than to say that is the full stop on the end of the sentence,” added Smith. “One thing we really want to do is develop this end of English cricket and not let it peter out but to push on from here. The same degree of attention, clarity and rigour we tried to bring to World Cup selection, we have also brought to Ashes selection,” he concluded.
After the World Cup win, it will be interesting to see how England will play in the upcoming Ashes.