With England’s Test batting under the scanner after a horror 2021, it seems likely that some new names are likely to come into the equation in 2022.
Here’s a look at a few batters who have racked up runs in the County Championship in recent years but remain uncapped at international level.
Tom Haines – Sussex
The 23-year-old left-handed opener was one of Sussex’s few bright spots in 2021, finishing as the leading run-scorer in the County Championship with 1,176 runs at an average of 47.04.
Jake Libby – Worcestershire
Haines was followed in the run-scoring charts by Libby, who has revitalised his red-ball career since moving from Nottinghamshire to Worcestershire ahead of the 2020 season – 19 first-class matches for the county in the last two years have seen him return 1,573 runs at an average of 56.17 and double his tally of hundreds to 10.
Ben Brown – Uncontracted
The 33-year-old departed from Sussex earlier this month and although where he goes next has yet to be announced, he holds a fine first-class record, averaging 40.41 after 157 matches. He was particularly impressive during his last season on the south coast, hitting four tons to finish with a Championship season average above 50.
Chris Dent – Gloucestershire
Dent has endured a lean couple of years but has long been regarded as one of the best openers on the county circuit. Back in 2019, he hit more than 1,000 County Championship runs as skipper to lead Gloucestershire to promotion from Division Two.
Josh Bohannon – Lancashire
Bohannon was Lancashire’s leading run-scorer as they finished runners-up in this year’s County Championship and has enjoyed a fine start to his red-ball career – after 37 matches the 24-year-old averages 43.97 with the bat. His presence in the Lions set-up for the tour of Australia suggests he is in England’s thoughts going forward.
Tom Abell – Somerset
Another member of the recent Lions set-up, Abell was only able score five runs across two innings against Australia A. But he has been a standout performer at Taunton in the last couple of years and was forced to carry much of his side’s batting load in this year’s County Championship, averaging just under 40 as their leading run-scorer.
Sam Hain – Warwickshire
Most well known for his record-breaking List-A batting average, Hain was Warwickshire’s leading run-scorer this year on their way to County Championship glory, hitting 826 runs in 14 matches at an average of 35.91.
Sam Northeast – Glamorgan
Northeast bounced around three counties last summer before eventually joining Glamorgan on a three-year deal. The former Kent captain has 25 first-class hundreds to his name across an 182-match career and only two men made more runs than him in Division One back in 2019.
Rob Yates – Warwickshire
A 22-year-old opening batter, Yates hit five first-class hundreds in 2021 – four in the County Championship and one in the Bob Willis Trophy – as Warwickshire secured both titles. He was rewarded with an England Lions call-up for the tour of Australia.
Alex Lees – Durham
After losing form at Yorkshire, opener Lees joined Durham in 2018 and returned to the Lions set-up for the tour of Australia after some strong showings with his county side – since the start of 2020, Lees has hit more than 1,000 first-class runs for Durham at an average of 42.12.
Joe Clarke – Nottinghamshire
A batter who has made more noise in recent years through his white-ball form, the 25-year-old established himself at Worcestershire as fine red-ball prospect; he has 18 first-class hundreds to his name. He was Nottinghamshire’s second-highest run-scorer in the County Championship last summer, hitting 760 runs at 36.19.
Nick Gubbins – Hampshire
The left-hander departed from Middlesex mid-way through last summer, one in which he hit multiple first-class hundreds in a season for the first time since 2016. He made a name for himself that year when he hit more than 1,400 first-class runs, driving forward a County Championship-winning season for the Lord’s-based county.