England, on Wednesday, named 30-man group for a training camp ahead of the three Test series against West Indies next month. The series will take place in empty stadiums at bio-secure venues.The games will take place at The Ageas Bowl and Old Trafford.
Moeen Ali’s inclusion highlights the 30-man group. The allrounder was left out of England’s Test squad for the Test series in New Zealand, South Africa and Sri Lanka (which did not take place due to the pandemic) after he requested a break from the longest format.
Moeen’s last Test appearance for England was in the opening match of last year’s Ashes series at Edgbaston. While Moeen had an excellent 12 months in Test cricket leading into the Ashes Test, he was dropped after the series-opener following his dismal performance.
Jonny Bairstow, who recently said that he wants to reclaim the keeping gloves in Test cricket, is included alongside first-choice wicketkeeper Jos Buttler and Surrey’s wicketkeeper Ben Foakes. Keaton Jennings and Saqib Mahmood, both of whom were part of the aborted tour to Sri Lanka, are included as well.
In addition to the regular faces, the group also has a number of young players who were part of the successful Lions tour to Australia during the winter. Of the uncapped players, Essex’s Dan Lawrence, Sussex’s Ollie Robinson and Gloucestershire’s James Bracey were key parts of the Lions victory over Australia A at the MCG in February. There are also places for Lancashire’s young leg-spinner Matt Parkinson, Surrey’s off-spinner Amar Virdi.
The group will arrive at the Ageas Bowl on June 23 and remain on-site for the duration to train in a behind-closed-doors environment. There will be an intra-squad three-day practice match, beginning on July 1, after which the party for the first Test will be named.
England will host the Caribbean outfit at The Ageas Bowl from July 8 for the first game before the series switches to Old Trafford for the final two games of the series, from July 16 and July 24 respectively.
Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), James Anderson (Lancashire), Jofra Archer (Sussex), Jonathan Bairstow (Yorkshire), Dominic Bess (Somerset), James Bracey (Gloucestershire), Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire), Rory Burns (Surrey), Jos Buttler (Lancashire), Zak Crawley (Kent), Sam Curran (Surrey), Joe Denly (Kent), Ben Foakes (Surrey), Lewis Gregory (Somerset), Keaton Jennings (Lancashire), Dan Lawrence (Essex), Jack Leach (Somerset), Saqib Mahmood (Lancashire), Craig Overton (Somerset), Jamie Overton (Somerset), Matthew Parkinson (Lancashire), Ollie Pope (Surrey), Ollie Robinson (Sussex), Joe Root (Yorkshire), Dom Sibley (Warwickshire), Ben Stokes (Durham), Olly Stone (Warwickshire), Amar Virdi (Surrey), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire), Mark Wood (Durham).