After starring for England in the third ODI against South Africa on Sunday, leg spinner Adil Rashid has made himself unavailable for the upcoming Sri Lanka Test series. The reigning World Champions are currently in South Africa, where they have already won a Test series by the margin of 3-1.
England and South Africa later contested in a three-match ODI series, which ended 1-1, after the second game was called off due to rain.
Rashid helped his team to make a comeback in the series after South Africa had already won the first ODI. He scalped three wickets on Sunday and was thus adjudged Player of the <atch.
Despite this, Rashid has made himself unavailable for England’s tour of Sri Lanka, because he wants to focus on the limited-overs format of the game as of now.
I’m concentrating on white-ball cricket at the moment: Adil Rashid
The 31-year-old spoke to Sky Sports after the third ODI and made his intentions clear about the upcoming Test series versus Sri Lanka.
“At this moment in time, I’m concentrating on playing for England in T20 cricket coming up in a couple of days. I don’t think I would (put my name for selection) at this moment in time. For me to get into Test cricket, I’ve got to earn that right and deserve my place. For me to get Test cricket, I’ve got to go back into county cricket, perform, do well, and then get selected,” said Rashid.
He further added, “It’s a bit unfair for me to just say, yeah, I’m available. At this moment in time, I’m really concentrating on white-ball cricket. Maybe in the future (I’ll come back to Test cricket).”
What does this mean for England?
Since Joe Root’s team will be without the services of Rashid for their next Test assignment in Sri Lanka. Well, they will continue to put faith in the likes of Dom Bess and Jack Leach as their spin options, both of whom played against South Africa.
Earlier last week, Root along with England coach Chris Silverwood met Moeen Ali as well, but it seems he too won’t be available for selection against Sri Lanka, as he intends to continue his self-imposed Test exile.
That just about sums up England’s spin bowling attack, which will be duly tested in the first Test in Galle on 19th March.
The second Test will be played in Colombo. Before that, they do have a three-match T20I series versus South Africa to worry about.