General News | 19th September 2005

Read not giving up on England

Despite scoring 659 first-class runs at an average of 43.93 so far this season, Read has been dumped into the National Academy by the England selectors who have instead chosen Sussex stumper Matt Prior as deputy for Geraint Jones.

Said Read: ?I?m disappointed not to be picked because on the wickets in Pakistan the quality of your wicketkeeper becomes more of an issue, which I thought might get me on the plane.

?When you add in the possibility of people dropping out from teams at the last minute, which can happen on the sub-continent, I felt there was a chance of playing Test cricket again.

?It wasn?t to be and all I can do is keep on scoring runs and performing behind the stumps for Notts. Winning the Championship has definitely helped relieve the disappointment and I would love to be able to help the team retain the title next year.?

The 27-year-old has been placed on a reserve list by the selectors and will be attending the Academy at Loughborough to keep fit, while Prior and Jones fly to Pakistan at the end of October.

England Chairman of Selectors David Graveney said: ?The selectors were aware of the credentials of Chris Read, Matt Prior and James Foster.

?Matt Prior has been a part of the One-day squad before and we feel that he is the best candidate to understudy Geraint Jones on this tour.?

Prior is currently averaging 33.52 with the bat while Jones finished the season with an average of only 23.57 for England and Kent, with just one 50.

Read also leads both on dismissals with 61 catches and two stumpings this season.

Director of Cricket Mick Newell said: ?England have made it clear to Chris that volume of runs will merit selection so he knows what he needs to do.

?We?re very pleased to have the best wicketkeeper in the country playing for us and we all hope he can force his way back into the England team soon.?

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