Worcestershire First Team Coach Alex Gidman says wicket-keeper batsman Alex Milton has put himself firmly in contention for more first team involvement after his fine knock against Australia.
Milton scored a superb 74 against an attack including Test duo Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood to leave Gidman admitting “you can’t ignore performances like that.”
It was his first senior appearance of 2019 and, after a disappointing start to the campaign with the bat, followed on from Championship centuries for the Seconds against Leicestershire (138) and Nottinghamshire (135) when leading last day rearguard actions.
Gidman said: “I thought he was super and he’s off the back off a couple of hundreds for the second team. By his own admission he didn’t have a great start to the season and understood why he wasn’t involved.
“For me, from an outcome point of view it wasn’t necessarily about winning or losing against Australia. It was about which individuals took the opportunity.
“It is clear a couple have – and a couple missed the opportunity. It is as simple as that and good on Alex in particular for sticking his hand up and showing that sort of skill and character that we are after.
“Has he put himself firmly in my mind for a first team recall? Naturally. To go and get 70 odd against a Test attack stands out. He will definitely be taken into consideration.
“I’m not going to sit here and say ‘he will definitely play’ but you can’t ignore performances like that.
“I thought Jack (Haynes) was super as well, a little counter-attack against two of the world’s best Test bowlers.
“For Jack to take it to them on the first evening was equally impressive and has given everyone just a little glimpse of what he is capable of as well.”
Milton has put himself in contention should Worcestershire opt to make changes when they return to Specsavers County Championship next weekend against Northamptonshire at Wantage Road.
Gidman said: “Although in the last five Championship games, we’ve lost three of them, in those three matches we gave ourselves a chance to go and win them and we didn’t take those opportunities.
“We have to accept that, I have to accept that, and that means that possibly we didn’t get everything 100 per cent right.
“We will learn all the way through, we will try and learn from our mistakes and, if that means we need to make some changes, then we certainly will do because you are where you are in the table for a reason.
“That means you haven’t done enough of the right things consistently enough.
“Although we’ve played some good cricket, we’ve also played some poor cricket and, if that means we need to introduce some new faces towards the end of the season, then we certainly will do if that’s what, most importantly, Joe (Leach) feels he needs as he walks onto the pitch.
“Ultimately it comes down to what he wants when he goes on the pitch.”