The England Cricket Board (ECB) announced the 15-man squad on Friday, with Ben Stokes leading the side for the two-match Test series against New Zealand starting February 16. Fast bowler Stuart Broad, who missed England’s recent 3-0 test series sweep in Pakistan due to the birth of his first child, has been recalled to the Test team.
Along with Broad, Matthew Potts and Don Lawrence have been recalled to the England team. Potts made his Test debut at Lord’s against New Zealand and had a good summer for England, taking 20 wickets at an average of 28.00 in the first five matches. However, with the return of Ollie Robinson, he did not play in the remaining two games against South Africa.
Rehan Ahmed Will Not Tour New Zealand
The tests in New Zealand are unlikely to favor spin, and with Jack Leach remaining first choice, Rehan Ahmed will miss the tour and instead play in a T20 league to gain experience in franchise cricket. Leg spinner became England’s youngest ever men’s test cricket player, and he took a decisive five-wicket haul against Pakistan in Karachi last week.
Mark Wood, who looked impressive in Pakistan, has been rested and will be available for selection for the tour to Bangladesh in March. Olly Stone, who last played for England against New Zealand in June 2021, will be looking to add to his three Test caps.
Stone, Harry Brook, Ben Duckett, and Will Jacks, who will play in the South Africa T20 League before the ODI series against the Proteas, will fly directly to New Zealand following the conclusion of that series.
England will play two warm-up matches against the New Zealand XI before the Test series against the Kiwis. The first of the two Tests will begin on February 16 at the Bay Oval in Mount Maunganui. It will be followed by the Basin Reserve in Wellington, from February 24.
England Test Squad
Ben Stokes (c), James Anderson, Stuart Broad, Harry Brook, Zak Crawley, Ben Duckett, Ben Foakes, Will Jacks, Dan Lawrence, Jack Leach, Ollie Pope, Matthew Potts, Ollie Robinson, Joe Root, Olly Stone