James Taylor is enjoying the cut of his official England suit. Three years after making his international debut and five years after collecting the prestigious Cricket Writers' Club young player award - won more recently by England regulars such as Steven Finn, Joe Root and Ben Stokes - Taylor has been included in a touring party for the first time, with an opportunity in Sri Lanka to stake his claim for a World Cup place.

No wonder that he smiles as he looks down to the three lions embroidered on his breast pocket. "It's the first opportunity I've got to wear this nice suit," he says. It is certainly a fine piece of tailoring. His next aim is to show that some high-class Taylor-ing is just what England's 50-over cricket needs.

More than most players, his measurements are the subject of public discourse - though only the ECB official responsible for Taylor's fitting (and there doubtless is one) knows his inside leg. Interviewed at Lord's for the latest episode of Alison's Tea Break, Taylor is happy to repeat his vital statistics: height 5ft 6½in, weight 66kg. Some have questioned whether that is substantial enough for him to succeed at the highest level but Taylor does not lose much in comparison to Sachin Tendulkar or Don Bradman, particularly in a pair of Cuban heels.

He is also sporting what is unmistakably a moustache, despite only a couple of weeks' growth, and seems genuinely chuffed to be talking about an England future again. If clothes maketh the man, then it will be runs that make Taylor a fixture of England's one-day middle order. "Thankfully I've knocked down that door at the minute, so it's up to me now to score some runs in international cricket," he says.

Taylor finished the season in sparkling form, with five hundreds in a matter of weeks - four of them in List A cricket. "In previous years, I haven't had that good finish to the season, so it's always given the selectors an excuse not to pick me. So I was just delighted I was able to score those runs so they couldn't not pick me. I was delighted to finish so strongly and get the reward at the end."

For the past few winters, Taylor has had to be content with going on a succession of Lions tours, to Australia, the Caribbean, Bangladesh, the UAE and Sri Lanka. He still faces obstacles to win a place in England's World Cup 15, with one batsman likely to miss out from the Sri Lanka squad, but is ready to grasp whatever opportunities arise during the seven-match ODI series. Having one of the national selectors, Mick Newell, as his coach at Nottinghamshire should mean that his case gets a full hearing.

Taylor's one-day form for Nottinghamshire, who won the YB40 in 2013 and reached the semi-finals of this year's 50-over competition, has been scintillating. His current List A average of 53.16, from 101 games, is the third-highest of all time. For those questioning his power, Taylor was behind only Sam Billings in hitting 15 sixes during the Royal London Cup; in fact, so hard does he go at the ball, he has torn his side muscles attempting to play shots.

"I think it's just hand speed and that base," he says. "Because of my height, I give it my all. When I do swing I go as hard as I can, combined with timing. If you get it wrong at my size, it doesn't go too far, so you've got to get it right more often than not. My hand speed is massive for me, I go through the ball as quick as I can, with the rotation in my hips and the power I try and generate. So a combination of all of that is where the power comes from.

"Everybody has their different strengths and I've got mine, which are very different to the big boys. For my size, I've always been able to hit it quite hard and I think I'm hitting it harder than ever before, maybe a combination of better technique, better power positions and going to the gym a bit more."

Taylor's batting may occasionally involve "swinging off my feet" in modern, T20 style but watching footage of him in the middle recalls British Pathe newsreels of diminutive men in oversized collars and shirtsleeves scurrying between the wickets. A low centre of gravity contributes to his balance at the crease, something which was aided by another of the Taylor family's sporting pursuits (never mind Kevin Pietersen's views on the crossover between horse riding and cricket). His father was a National Hunt jockey and his mother and sister rode for Britain.

"I've ridden all my life and I think the first time I went hunting was when I was about two, on a little Shetland pony. I last went hunting when I was 17 and that was one of the last days I rode," Taylor says. "I did eventing myself but got pretty bored of the dressage, trotting up and down in an arena not doing a lot.

"The balance to stay on a horse when they're galloping along, you've got to be pretty stable - and strong, especially when you get into racing, those jockeys, even though they're little, they're extremely powerful to control that horse."

If Taylor ends up carrying the drinks in Sri Lanka, it may feel a bit like a return to the "trotting up and down not doing a lot" of dressage. But he must be alert and ready to jump the fences put in front of him if the dream of a place in England's World Cup squad is to be realised.

"It's been a goal for me for the last few years, I set my sights on the 2015 World Cup in Australia. I'm that bit closer now but I can't get carried away by looking too far ahead. It's up to me to cement my place in Sri Lanka and the only way I'm going to do that is by putting in match-winning scores like I have for Notts, and hopefully putting in some consistent performances for the side."

Alan Gardner is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @alanroderick