Essex star Jamie Porter says he was ‘gutted’ to miss out on England Test selection earlier this summer, as quoted by ESPN Cricinfo.
The 27-year-old was first called up by England ahead of a Test series against India in the summer of 2018 but is yet to make his debut for his country.
Despite taking an incredible 350 wickets in 89 matches since his first-class debut in 2014, he now appears to have slipped down the England pecking order, after failing to make the extended training squad named in May ahead of the series’ against West Indies and Pakistan.
Porter admits that his omission was initially tough to take.
“It was a bit of a shock,” he said, as quoted by ESPN Cricinfo. “I feel if you were picking a 55-man squad, and with my numbers over the last few years – to not be in there, I was gutted, I was really disappointed.”
“I had a week when I was pretty down about it all. But it did help motivate me for when we got back – there’s only one way I can really answer back and that’s by taking wickets. That’s what I’ve done and hopefully, what I’ll keep doing.
“I had a conversation with Ed Smith at the time. It’s a tough one because the obvious answer is you’ve got to take wickets and bowl well. I probably knew that anyway. Sometimes things just come down to a matter of opinion and you’ve got to accept that.
“Unfortunately, the decision-makers’ opinion is they wanted to give that opportunity to other people. All I can do is bounce back, get better and hopefully keep knocking on the door.”
Porter’s non-selection would have broken many players, but as he says, he entered the Bob Willis Trophy with a point to prove and he’s performing predictably well for his county once again.
So far, the bustling seamer has 23 wickets from six matches at an average of 20.65 with one five-for.
At the time of writing, he had figures of 2/85 in the first innings of the Lord’s final against Somerset, picking up the scalps of George Bartlett and Craig Overton.
With England next scheduled to face India in an away series, he is highly unlikely to receive a call-up, with the selectors set to go for the experience of Stuart Broad, James Anderson and Chris Woakes alongside the raw pace of Jofra Archer and Mark Wood.
However, despite all the disappointment surrounding his seemingly unjust omissions on home soil, he shouldn’t lose faith just yet.
Porter’s numbers are superb but he’s trying to earn England Test selection at a time when the country is blessed with an outstanding array of talent in the seam bowling department.
His time in the sun could still arrive, though, if he keeps excelling at Chelmsford.
James Anderson and Stuart Broad proved this summer that they are far from finished at international level, but the high-class duo can’t continue forever.
In a few years time, England will likely be hit by both of their retirements and if Porter is still wreaking havoc in the County Championship, he’ll surely then be impossible to ignore.