England team for Sri Lanka tour: England have announced a 16-member squad for the upcoming two-match Test series in Sri Lanka.
England have announced a 16-member Test squad for the forthcoming tour of Sri Lanka which will comprise of two Test matches. It was only earlier this week that ECB (England Cricket Board) had confirmed the rejigged schedule of the tour which was originally scheduled to be played in March this year.
Vice-captain Ben Stokes, who had missed England’s last two Test matches against Pakistan at home due to family reasons, will continue to rest. Much like Stokes, fast bowler Jofra Archer has also been rested as England have hinted at rotating their all-format players to keep them fresh amidst moving in and out of bio-bubbles in the COVID-19 era.
Other than Stokes and Archer, opening batsman Rory Burns has also been given a break for he and his wife are expecting their first child. Batsman Ollie Pope, who had suffered a shoulder injury during the Test series against Pakistan, isn’t part of the squad but will travel with the team for his rehab.
With England looking set to travel to India directly from Sri Lanka, there is a possibility of the likes of Burns and Pope joining the squad in India. The only other player who was part of the Test team for Pakistan series but hasn’t been included for the tour of Sri Lanka is pacer Ollie Robinson. The 27-year old player, however, is among the seven reserves who will travel alongside the squad.
England team for Sri Lanka tour
Wicket-keeper batsman Jonny Bairstow, whose last Test was last year’s Boxing Day Test in South Africa, has been recalled into the team. All-rounder Moeen Ali, who didn’t play a Test after last year’s Ashes series at home, is another man to earn a comeback as England look to bolster their spin department.
Excited to get back out there! 🏴 pic.twitter.com/LbxF0R5wqu
— Joe Root (@root66) December 4, 2020
Wicket-keeper batsman Ben Foakes, who had scored a Test century on debut during England’s last tour of Sri Lanka, also find a spot in the team. With Jos Buttler also retaining his place, England are highly likely to play one out of Bairstow or Foakes as a specialist batsman.
Apart from the trio, spinner Jack Leach might also be seen playing his first Test after more than a year after making it back into the squad.
Fast bowler Olly Stone, who didn’t play another Test after his Test debut against Ireland last year, has been added to the fast bowling department which also comprises of the veteran-duo of James Anderson and Stuart Broad, Chris Woakes, Sam Curran and Mark Wood.
Essex batsman Dan Lawrence remains the only uncapped player to find a place in the English squad for Sri Lanka tour.
England’s 16-member squad for two Tests in Sri Lanka
Joe Root (c), Moeen Ali, James Anderson, Jonathan Bairstow, Dom Bess, Stuart Broad, Jos Buttler, Zak Crawley, Sam Curran, Ben Foakes, Dan Lawrence, Jack Leach, Dom Sibley, Olly Stone, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood.
James Bracey, Mason Crane, Saqib Mahmood, Craig Overton, Matthew Parkinson, Ollie Robinson, Amar Virdi.