Somerset's Nick Compton expects tough Test series for England in New Zealand
Somerset’s England Test batsman Nick Compton is predicting a tough series against New Zealand, which starts in Dunedin on March 6.
The 29-year-old made his England Test debut in the series success against India before Christmas, after a highly successful season with Somerset in 2012 in which he scored almost 1,200 runs at an average just short of 100.
Compton has been back at the County Ground in Taunton this week, before heading off to New Zealand at the start of next week. He said: “I think it will be quite tough playing in the conditions in New Zealand but, if I can play anything like I did last summer, then hopefully I can get a couple of good scores and cement my place in the side.
“It’s quite clear that this is a big series for me and I’m not looking any further than the games against New Zealand. I’m taking it one game at a time and not looking ahead to the rest of the year.”
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Talking about making his Test debut in the autumn, Compton said: “It feels great to be playing Test match cricket, and I guess it’s a bit like a dream come true for me. It really is something that I’ve worked very hard towards, even though at time is felt like it was a million miles away.
“However, in the last couple of years it has felt more tangible, and it is something that I have worked really hard for.
“It’s a huge honour and that moment when I received my England cap from Graham Gooch is something that I will never forget. It’s the proudest moment of my cricketing career, without doubt.”
Compton made his first-class debut for Middlesex as far back as 2004. When he was asked what he attributed his recent run of success to, he replied: “I think I owe it to a lot of things, really.
“One is leaving London and coming down to a different environment which was slightly out of my comfort zone. I also stepped up to join a Division One side, and I always feel in life that in life when you put yourself out of your comfort zone that’s when you grow as a person.
“Brian Rose and Andy Hurry gave me a very defined role and they just wanted me to go out there and bat, which took a lot of pressure off me. I think having the likes of Marcus Trescothick, James Hildreth and Craig Kieswetter around me really enabled me to fulfil that role.
“It meant I could get used to batting for long periods of time, and, when you start doing that, you find a bit of consistency, your confidence grows, your method improves and suddenly you have a formula for success.”
Compton will return from New Zealand straight into final preparations for the 2013 Somerset campaign, about which he said: “Every new season is exciting and last year we came second in the Championship.
“The club’s motivation is to try to win something so I’m looking forward to getting back and involved and hopefully preparing for an Ashes series as well, but I’m not really looking that far ahead yet.”