Browse News

News by Competition News by Topics News by County Teams News by International Teams

Join TwelfthMan now!

Taylor lauds Lions attack

James Taylor heaped praise on England Lions’ bowlers, whom he described as “exceptional” in the draw with Sri Lanka A Emerging Players.

The hosts dug in for a draw in the Lions’ opening game of a tour that includes a trio of four-day matches versus Sri Lanka A.

Scott Borthwick’s 51 and a 17-ball 31 not out from Tymal Mills helped the visitors turn their overnight 253 to five into 383 all out.

Despite three scalps for off-spinner Moeen Ali, 63 from Bhanuka Rajapaksa and Roshen Silva’s unbeaten 46 aided a stumps score of 192 for five in 54 overs.

Speaking exclusively to, Taylor said: “It was a great work-out.

Off-spinner Moeen Ali keeps England Lions in the hunt for victory with impressive figures of 3-51 at Colombo’s Premadasa Stadium

“At the end of the day this was a warm-up game. Obviously we come into the game trying to win it. Unfortunately we didn’t quite get over the line - they put up a bit of resistance with the bat - but in all it was a good first performance from us on this tour.”

Sam Robson’s second-innings century on Lions debut and 61 from Taylor typified a strong batting display from Chris Woakes’ side.

Mark Wood’s first-innings 5-32 showed there was much in the Premadasa Stadium’s wicket for seamers as well as spinners.

“The sub-continent’s a hard place to come but plenty of the batsmen got a good work-out and the bowlers were exceptional. Mark Wood was very good and so was Chris Woakes,” added Taylor.

“Our spinners did a great job. It’s been a good work-out for the lads to spend some time in the field, which is crucial.”

The Lions’ other warm-up is another three-day fixture against the same opponents, from Thursday at Colombo’s Colts Cricket Ground.

The diminutive Taylor approaches that buoyed by his half-century, which came during a hundred partnership alongside Robson.

“It was good, competitive cricket on a big outfield, a slow outfield and a pitch that was offering plenty for the spinners,” he said.

“It was tough work, especially in the heat as well. But, as I said, first game of the tour, it’s just nice to spend some time in the middle.”

iPad and mobile apps

Get live scores, news, videos with ECB Cricket Live for iPad and ECB Cricket app for iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, Nokia

Follow us on Twitter

Stay up to date and fully informed wherever you are by following ECB_cricket on Twitter

Watch county highlights

Watch highlights from NatWest T20 Blast, County Championship, Royal London One-Day Cup action on