With the crucial tests against Sri Lanka and India coming up for England this summer, there are bound to be some new faces coming into the XI. Of those potential potential new faces for the available slots in the team, none are making as big a case as Chris Jordan at the moment.
The Sussex seamer recently took 5-29 in the 3rd ODI against the Sri Lankans, helping England bowl them out for 67 and in the process was the catalyst in making England go 2-1 up in the series.
With Chris Tremlett down in pace, Steve Finn struggling to find rhythm and Boyd Rankin lacking the menace last season that earned him a call up in the final Ashes test in the winter, England seem to be struggling to find a real out and out fast bowler.
The key word here is fast. Proven test performers Stuart Broad and James Anderson are fantastic new ball bowlers, but when the ball is not swinging much - as it did in Australia - England need a plan B.
You only have to look at what Australia did in the 5-0 demolition of England. Swing bowlers Ryan Harris and Peter Siddle were outstanding in keeping things tight but at times did not look that they were a huge threat to the English batsman. The difference in the series however, was a certain Mitchell Johnson, who bowled regularly at 90+mph to skittle out England on many occasions on way to taking 37 wickets at an average 13.97. When the ball wasn't swinging, he was the man that made things happen for Australia.
England did not have this type of bowler in the winter and consequently failed to finish off an Australia innings when they regularly made inroads into their top order. As shown by Johnson, pace is perhaps the one thing that tail-enders don't like to face and as a result of England not having a threatening fast bowler who could bowl even close to Johnson's speed, the Aussie tail regularly wagged and they got to competitive scores frequently.
Jordan has a long way to go to even come close to the pace and quality that Johnson possesses at the moment, but England need to pick him so he can become accustomed to the demands of Test cricket.
Many would ask though, why Jordan?
It isn't only his pace that Jordan has proven already for England. His wicket taking ability and the control he has with the ball surely means that he could be a success in Tests, where consistency is arguably the biggest trait needed in a bowler at that level.
Coach David Saker has been singing his praises recently, stating that "Chris Jordan is the ultimate professional - the way he prepares for the game and the way he looks after himself. He always wants to get better - and he is getting better. He's been a real find for us. On his performances so far, he is a Test cricketer."
Not only that, but former England no.1 spinner Graeme Swann, speaking after the demolition on Wednesday, said that "He's a definite candidate for that first eleven." and that "He looks ready-made for international cricket."
If that wasn't enough, Jordan's sparkling cameos with the bat down the order are improving his credentials as a genuine all-rounder. His game changing 27 off 9 balls in the third T20 vs West Indies in March, in which he clubbed Dwayne Bravo for four sixes, and his sparkling 13 ball 38 in the first ODI vs Sri Lanka show that he is more than capable with the bat. With Swann now retired, a capable lower order player is going to be vital to England's batting order.
Jordan's pace can not only be useful for England in England but also in the subcontinent, where genuine pace is more likely to be a success than swing bowling due to the harsh conditions.
England have been searching for an out and out quick bowler for a while but if the selectors give the 25-year-old a chance this summer, they may reap huge rewards.
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