Hampshire all-rounder Taylor spent three and a half months before Christmas in Wellington where he worked with Test star Patel and trained with Plunket Shield side the Firebirds, on one of the ECB’s Overseas Placements, writes Alex Smith.
And his work in New Zealand has paid dividends in the 50-over competition, with an impressive economy rate of under a five runs an over in the first three matches in the format this summer.
“I went out to Wellington for three and a half months and worked with Jeetan Patel,” Taylor said. “It was awesome working with him and training with Wellington Firebirds three or four times a week.
“It was really good to learn off probably the best off-spinner in the country for the last four or five years. I picked his brains. A lot of tactical stuff like being able to bowl at different batters but also technical stuff, like positions on the crease and things like that.
"I learned a lot about my own action and how I bowl over the winter. What I picked up has certainly helped in this competition but a lot of it is also confidence.”
Taylor is playing an identical role to injured Liam Dawson in the Hampshire side – namely deepening the batting line-up but more importantly bowling in tandem with Mason Crane.
While leg spinner Crane attacks to take wickets, Taylor dries up the runs from the other end to create a squeeze on opposition teams.
The tactic has been heavily rehearsed by the 21-year-olds having practised it while rocketing through the Hampshire academy together – and also for England Under-19s.
“It is nice to be bowling with Mason at either end,” Taylor smiled. “We did it all the time growing up, me holding an end up and him doing the job the other end. There isn’t much mystery to what I do compared to Mason. Joe Weatherley, Mason and myself all played age group cricket all the way up together so it is nice to play all together.”
Hampshire have won all three of their opening games with the white ball with impressive displays against Sussex, Surrey and Essex.
Taylor, who has been frustrated by a series of injuries in recent years, has got his first team chance after Dawson damaged his fingers.
But the Holybourne based ace is trying not to get ahead of himself despite his impressive showings. He said: “It was unlucky for Daws but I am really please I have been able to get some games under my belt and shown what I can do with the ball.
“I don’t try and think about the future. There are still a lot of games left in the competition where Daws is out so I just want to concentrate on them and do the best in those. My ultimate target is to win this competition and I will do everything I can do to help us do that.
“I feel like if I can keep on bowling how I am bowling, keeping the runs down, then hopefully pick up a couple more wickets and contribute with the bat, then I’ll be happy.”