Trott reinforces his importance to England
Posted in England
As Nick Compton further asserted his place at the top of England’s Test batting order, it was his partner for much of the day who predictably acted as an unrelenting foil.
Jonathan Trott delivered the latest in a long line of masterclasses in the art of elegant stroke-play and concentration, to progress to an unbeaten 121 on the opening day of the second Test at Wellington. Compton added 210 with Trott but fell for 100 before stumps were drawn at 267 for two.
England supporters should not be surprised that Trott would be the man to deliver once again, and such a dogged innings is something that we have all become accustomed to.
Simply put, the Warwickshire batsman is calmness personified and his presence among the England top order seems so familiar that it is hard to believe that he made his debut as recently as 2009.
The success of the 31-year-old is likely to act as a source of inspiration to Compton, who has similarly come into the international game at a late stage in his career and has shown an equally impressive temperament at the crease.
Trott’s Test average of just over 50 is all the proof needed when discussing his importance to England, while his accumulation of nine format centuries is a more than competitive return when you consider that he is only playing in his 40th Test.
Opposition bowlers know that they are going to face a tough job to displace him, and fellow England batsmen know that he is likely to stick around for a long time, making him the perfect man to build an innings around.
On countless occasions, Trott has helped to get his country out of potentially precarious positions, displaying an almost unrivalled coolness in the face of adversity and willingness to dig deep.
Today he was asked to step up once more after the tourists lost the influential Alastair Cook in the 11th over, steadying the ship to great effect alongside Compton to help put England in a great position heading into the next four days.
Admittedly, the danger of collapse was not as prominent as it was in the first Test at Dunedin, where England were already three down at the same stage, but it still needed an assured head to come in and make sure that New Zealand were not about to smell blood. And they do not come any more assured that Trott.
History suggests that once Trott gets a start, he will be very hard to remove. The Black Caps attack face a difficult task to ensure that the England number three does not cause further damage in the coming sessions.
However, with New Zealand continuing to deliver pitches offering little assistance for the bowlers, the sight of Trott lifting his bat towards the pavilion may well be a pleasant one that we need to get used to for the duration of the series.