Keaton Jennings will make his Test debut against India and if there’s one aspect of this news that everyone’s talking about, it’s the fact that the Durham opener has two surnames and no first name.
England are not unaware of this and they will no doubt harbour concerns about the balance of the side. The team, as it stands, now contains a surname surplus and a first name shortfall with no immediate solution available.
Long-term, England will no doubt be looking to Jason Roy to fill the void. An enforced name-swap so as to field a Jason Keaton and a Roy Jennings seems unlikely. More likely management will simply be content to weigh all the team’s first names against all of the surnames, dealing with them en masse.
Earlier this year, we suggested that Keaton Jennings would have been One To Watch if we still did that kind of thing. Those who took our implicit advice and opted to track his progress anyway will doubtless feel well-informed about his rise to the England team. Others will just have to trawl through the county cricket category on this website, noting that each time he scored a hundred, we said that he’d scored a hundred.
We don’t believe Jason Roy earned any mentions from us for his County Championship returns this season. This opens up the distinct possibility that England could be profoundly unbalanced for an extended period.