Nick Compton’s test statistics are far from gloomy, he has thus far averaged just over 30 in all the tests he has played. Consider that he bats at the top of the order when the ball is at it’s hardest and the bowlers are at their freshest and his stats aren’t bad at all. Compare that to Adam Lyth who occupied an opener’s position for seven matches in 2015 averaging just over 20. Sam Robson has also played 7 tests averaging just above 30 and is also in line to feature for England this summer following the untimely retirement of James Taylor.
In the BBC published an article titled ‘Nick Compton: England batsman says that approach does not make him intense‘. The description of Compton as ‘intense’ made me feel uneasy at the time that the article was published, it didn’t picture him in a favourable light. Nor did it tell the full story.
And today, on the 9th June, just two months on from the BBC’s analysis, Michael Atherton (The Times) suggested that it was now or never for Compton if he is to survive in the England team. Compton has struggled to cement his place in the England team and although Taylor’s untimely exit from the game provided Compton with an extended run in, his performances have been sub-par. In 2016, Compton has failed to register a 50 at a time when Bairstow, Stokes and Cook in particular, have flourished.
Although England did well on the whole today at Lords, finishing on 279-6 with Bairstow unbeaten on 107* after an excellent knock, Compton failed to demonstrate his talents once again. The pressure is mounting and perhaps, when Compton walks out on day 3 or 4 in England’s second innings, it really will be the final chance.
England have dominated the test series thus far rarely being troubled by Sri Lanka in all disciplines on the cricket field. However, today Sri Lanka managed a much more convincing performance with Angelo Matthew’s figures of 10-5-19-0, a fine reflection of the pressure that Sri Lanka have placed on England’s batsmen. Tomorrow morning may well have a crucial impact on the match as a whole but has Compton’s time finally ran out?