England places up for grabs - Bayliss


Trevor Bayliss believes England are "by no means the finished article" and says the pressure will be on under-performing batsmen to earn a place in the side for the next Test series against Sri Lanka.

England won the four-match Test series in South Africa 2-1, but suffered a 280-run hammering at Centurion after a feeble collapse saw them bowled out for only 101 on Tuesday.

Opener Alex Hales endured a disappointing first Test series with the bat, while the recalled Nick Compton was short of runs at number three after a promising start in Durban and James Taylor struggled at five.

And head coach Bayliss intimated places in the team for the first Test against Sri Lanka at Headingley - which starts on May 19 - will be up for grabs when the County Championship season starts in April.

He said: "We're by no means the finished article. There is some very good talent in the team, but there are a few rough edges to knock off as well and that will take some time.

"I think that is a sign to everyone else in county cricket that, 'If I come out and score runs early in the season, there are possibilities there'.

"There are four or five rounds of county matches before that first Test against Sri Lanka. Those matches will be very important for some of those players."

Hales made just 136 runs at an average of 17, but Bayliss still feels he has the potential to succeed in the longest format of the game.

"I thought the first couple of games, even though he didn't score a lot of runs in Durban, he looked quite comfortable at the crease and he looked like he belonged." the Australian added.

"He's one of those guys who has shown what he can do at this level. whether it is as an opener or somewhere else in the order, he is certainly a guy with a lot of talent."