I'm very positive about the possible appointment of Ed Smith as Englands new national selector and hopefully he can provide the shake-up and forward-thinking approach which English cricket requires.
Former Kent, Middlesex and England batsman Smith, who has been a Test Match Special commentator since 2012, seems to be the favourite for the role after seeing off competition from the likes of Andy Flower and Mick Newell for the role.
Should he be appointed, he would essentially be replacing James Whitaker in the lead selection role and, together with another independent selector, will work alongside England coach Trevor Bayliss in a three-man panel.
Im glad an outsider, so to speak, has been given the top job as there is always the danger that someone already in the system will use the same methods currently in place – the hiring of Smith would ensure a different mindset.
I dont know much about Smith, except hes very posh, but its good to mix things up and his potential appointment will allow a fresh set of eyes to be cast on how things are done, new ideas to be considered and an alternative approach to be enacted.
In some senses Smith, a published author and journalist, is a left-field choice, but such positions dont always have to be filled by a huge name or someone who has a lengthy history of playing Test cricket for England.
Its more important for the appointee to be willing to put in the hard work, do their due diligence on players, do everything in their power to make the right decisions and be passionate about English cricket, something which Smith certainly is.
I definitely think a freshen-up in terms of the structure of selection and personnel is opportune following a disappointing winter and needed as, especially in Test cricket, England have got themselves into a bit of a rut in terms of picking players.
England often appear to select similar types of players and Ive been saying for a while now that when were not playing in our own conditions we need to think outside the box more.
Quite often we seem to be left scratching our heads after a series in the subcontinent or tour of Australia, despite selecting the same kind of bowlers or employing tactics that have failed before.
When certain tours come around, we simply seem to pick the players that are in form at the time, but there needs to be greater preparation rather than a thought process seemingly taking place a few months before players are on the plane.
It will be interesting to see how the new regime pans out; its impossible for change to be witnessed overnight and I doubt the Test team will be changed radically for the first Test of the summer in May.
But with an eye on future tours and perhaps starting with the Lions and age-group teams, we might start to see a more progressive approach.