STRIKER Lyle Taylor is backing his “big risk” to pay off after rejecting the chance to stay out on loan in favour of a return to Dean Court.

Taylor last week looked set to extend into a second month his stay with Lewes after netting twice in six appearances for the Conference South strugglers.

But although Cherries boss Lee Bradbury had given his blessing to the move, Taylor instead decided to head back to Dean Court to fight for a place.

Signed from Ryman League outfit Concord Rangers in the summer, Taylor made three starts and nine substitute appearances under previous boss Eddie Howe.

The 20-year-old, who has been restricted to one brief appearance off the bench under Bradbury, lined up in Cherries’ 2-0 defeat by Football Combination rivals Swansea City yesterday.

Taylor, who could also have gone to Havant & Waterlooville, told the Daily Echo: “The |manager left the final decision with me and I said I wanted to come back to try to push for a place.

“Going to Lewes was a good experience. It was good to play regularly because we don’t have too many reserve games and it allowed me to get some match fitness and sharpness back.

“But it was almost a ‘welcome back to last season’ and a big wake-up call for me.

“I have played at a lower level so it wasn’t really a culture shock. With respect to the Conference South, it was more a case of this is where I could be if I don’t work hard and prove I am able to play in the pro game.

“It hits home and opens your eyes to where you could be and how lucky you are to be where you are.”

While Bradbury has made no secret of the fact he is keen to draft in a new striker, Taylor is hoping to stake his claim to the new manager.

He added: “The manager has got to make a decision he feels is best for the team.

“If that means bringing in a striker from the Championship or the Premier League, that will be his choice.

“I want to put myself in the frame and know I have got to prove myself. If I didn’t feel I could push for a place in the squad or the team then I would have stayed out on loan.”

Although Taylor had a couple of half-chances against the Swans, the Welsh outfit marked St David’s Day with victory thanks to goals from Kemy Agustien and Jordan Prosser.