Middlesex and England batsman Nick Compton is to take an immediate break away from cricket, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) have announced. The 32-year-old batsman has struggled for form this summer and is thought to be on the cusp of losing his place in the England Test match side following his poor form in the recent series against Sri Lanka.
The ECB confirmed that both parties agreed that the best way forward, both physically and mentally, is for Compton to spend some time away from cricket. The right-handed batsman made scores of 0, 9, 22 not out, 1 and 19 as England won the three-match series 2-0.
"Nick sets himself very high standards and makes a huge commitment to cricket," Angus Fraser, the Managing Director of Cricket at Middlesex, explained in a statement. "We all believe that some time away from the game now will allow him to refresh, recharge and return to play the sort of cricket we all know he is capable of producing.
"During this period Nick will receive the full support of Middlesex CCC and the England Cricket Team Management."
The ECB has not put a timescale on Compton's absence from the game. However, the decision to take time out and his poor recent run means he is unlikely to be considered for selection for the first Test match against Pakistan, which begins at Lord's on 14 July.
The announcement comes shortly after Compton said he was playing for his place in the Test side. "We're in the entertainment business, it's about getting bums on seats," he admitted, according to the BBC. "I know deep inside me there's a player in here who could change all those opinions very quickly, but, unfortunately, until you do it and people see it in real life, there's no point in me saying anything else."
Compton – who is the grandson of the great England batsman Denis – has averaged 28.70 in his 16 Test appearances. He returned to the side for the Test series in South Africa in 2015 after a two-and-a-half-year absence, but has failed to cement his place in the England team.