September 18, 2020 | kzmwuuff | No Comments
(BBC) – England have named an unchanged 14-man squad for the first of their three Tests against Pakistan, which begins on Wednesday, August 5 at Old Trafford.It comprises the side who beat West Indies in the final Test at the same venue on Monday – plus Zak Crawley, Sam Curran and Mark Wood.Batsman Crawley was omitted for that game as England selected an extra seamer with Ben Stokes unable to bowl.The series will again be played in a secure ‘bio-bubble’ without spectators.Having been kept inside the ‘bubble’ for the duration of the West Indies series, which the hosts won 2-1, the England players were permitted a few days at home with their families but must return on Sunday, and will continue to have regular COVID-19 testing.Four reserves – James Bracey, Ben Foakes, Jack Leach and Dan Lawrence – will also report to the Manchester venue.National selector Ed Smith said: “After three Tests in quick succession against West Indies, we now turn to an equally condensed Test series against Pakistan, with 15 days of Test cricket scheduled in a three-week period.“County cricket now restarts on Saturday August 1. We want to have sufficient reserves inside the Test match ‘bubble’, but we may also want to give opportunities, where possible, for the reserves to play county cricket.“As we seek the best balance, England may make changes to the reserves during the series against Pakistan.”England squad for first Test: Joe Root (Yorkshire, capt.), James Anderson (Lancashire), Jofra Archer (Sussex), Dominic Bess (Somerset), Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire), Rory Burns (Surrey), Jos Buttler (Lancashire, wkp.), Zak Crawley (Kent), Sam Curran (Surrey), Ollie Pope (Surrey), Dom Sibley (Warwickshire), Ben Stokes (Durham), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire), Mark Wood (Durham).Reserves: James Bracey (Gloucestershire), Ben Foakes (Surrey, wkp.), Dan Lawrence (Essex), Jack Leach (Somerset).