Tom Banton determined to work on glovework despite Kevin Pietersen criticism

Tom Banton hopes to follow in Jos Buttler’s footsteps as he looks to expand England’s wicketkeeper-batter talent pool.

The 23-year-old took the gloves for the first time for England during their 20-run defeat against West Indies. 

Banton was thrown into the position following the omission of Sam Billings, who was rested after tacking a hectic recent schedule.

Windies produced their highest score against England in a T20 match as they finished their innings on 224 for five. Banton went largely unnoticed behind the wicket, but showed his class with the bat after scoring 73 from just 39 balls.

England may be well stocked for keeping options with the likes of Billings, Buttler, Phil Salt and Jonny Bairstow already in the squad. However, that hasn't deterred the youngster from pursuing a future with the gloves.

England's Tom Banton in action during the Vitality IT20 match at Old Trafford, Manchester.

He said: "Keeping wicket is very important to me, but it's probably not been my number one priority if I'm being brutally honest.

"I've always focused on my batting and now I've got to a point this year where I've realised that it's something that I can really try and work on and get better on because I've not done too much work on it in the past.

"But I think for red-ball, probably a little bit too much of a toll on my back. After a few days in the field, I'll probably be a bit sore. But, yeah, I really want to work on it."

One of the men Banton will be looking to emulate is his current England teammate Jos Buttler.

England wicketkeeper Jos Buttler heading home from Ashes with finger injury

Speaking about the 31-year-old, he said: "He's probably the best in the world.

"I'm quite good mates with Jos and it's weird because I look up to him, now I get to play with him and it's awesome. Definitely, I want to follow in his footsteps."

One man who is not keen on Banton's wicketkeeping ambitions is former England captain Kevin Pietersen.

When asked about the young batsman during The Hundred, the 41-year-old opined Banton was 'wasting' his talent, adding: "He needs to rework the way he goes about his batting. There is a big psychological change that needs to happen there."

Former England player Kevin Pietersen is seen commentating for Australian TV on Day 1 of the First Test match between Australia and England

Banton was stung by the remarks but a phone call with Pietersen the following day smoothed matters over.

The 23-year-old said: "It was hard to hear to be honest, I'm not going to lie. I remember I was sat there after The Hundred game and hearing him talk on Sky while I was eating and then I called him the next day and he kind of explained a bit more about what he meant.

"There's good and bad things being said about every player all the time, more often than not it's bad. It's kind of the sport we're in so you've just got to get on with it."

READ MORE: Don't expect 2022 schedule to help red-ball cricket, warns ECB boss

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