All-rounder Moeen Ali included as England name 30-man training group for West Indies series

England have announced their 30-member training camp for the upcoming three-match Test series against West Indies. Off-spinner Moeen Ali has been included in the training camp despite taking a long break from Test Cricket.

The 30-member squad consists of experienced players who have been part of the Test side for the past couple of years. Young players who toured Australia and did well for English Lions this winter, have been included. The opening game of the Test series will be played on 23rd June at Ageas Bowl in Southampton.

The training squad will arrive two weeks in Southampton before the start of opening Test to make adequate preparation. Players will train behind-closed doors in a bio-secure environment. There will be three-day match game between intra-squad that will be played on 1st July. After the match ends, the selection committee will announce Test squad for opening game against West Indies.

England all-rounder made his last appearance for the side in the opening game of Ashes series at Edgbaston played last summer. Despite doing exceedingly well with the bat and ball in the 12-month period, he was dropped from the side after a poor show in the opening Ashes Test. Since that game, he has not played Test cricket for England.

Despite having the backing of Captain Joe Root and chief selector Ed Smith, Moeen Ali decided to take a break from Test cricket. He missed the series in New Zealand and South Africa and was not considered for tour to Sri Lanka which was later postponed due to Covid-19 Pandemic.

In April this year, Moeen Ali expressed his desire to play Test cricket for England and clearly stated that he wanted in the Test side ahead of the next winter’s Ashes series. Moeen Ali offers a lot with bat and ball to the side in red-ball cricket.

Jonny Bairstow has managed to retain his place in the Test setup. Jos Buttler is still England’s first choice wicket-keeper and Ben Foakes has been included as reserve wicket-keeper. Pacer Olly Stone has been named in training camp after recovering from a stress fracture.

Lancashire pacer Saqib Mahmood and Keaton Jennings have been included in the training camp as they were selected for Sri Lanka series earlier this year. Opener Rory Burns has recovered from injury after suffering from an ankle injury during the second Test against South Africa.

Zak Crawley, Ollie Pope, Dom Sibley and Joe Denly have managed to keep their places in the 30-man training camp after doing well in South Africa.

Uncapped players Dan Lawrence, Ollie Robinson and James Bracey performed exceeding well and helped England Lions secure a win over Australia at Melbourne Cricket Ground in February. Leg-spinner Matt Parkinson and off-spinner Amar Virdi, all-rounder trio of Craig Overton, Lewis Gregory and Jamie Overton have called up for the training camp that will take place at Ageas Bowl in Southampton.

Lancashire’s Glenn Chapple, Gloucestershire’s Richard Dawson and Kent’s Matt Walker have been named as a support staff to England Head Coach Chris Silverwood. Assistant coach Graham Thorpe, Chris Read and Carl Hopkinson complete the coaching positions. Paul Collingwood, who is part of England’s coaching staff is set to take charge of England’s limited-overs side this summer, pending approval from England and Wales Cricket Board.

Squad:

Joe Root (Yorkshire), Jonathan Bairstow (Yorkshire), Amar Virdi (Surrey), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire), Dominic Bess (Somerset), James Bracey (Gloucestershire), Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire), Dom Sibley (Warwickshire), Ben Stokes (Durham), Joe Denly (Kent), Ben Foakes (Surrey), Lewis Gregory (Somerset), Keaton Jennings (Lancashire), Dan Lawrence (Essex), Jack Leach (Somerset), Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), James Anderson (Lancashire), Jofra Archer (Sussex), Rory Burns (Surrey), Jos Buttler (Lancashire), Zak Crawley (Kent), Sam Curran (Surrey), Mark Wood (Durham). Saqib Mahmood (Lancashire), Craig Overton (Somerset), Jamie Overton (Somerset), Matthew Parkinson (Lancashire), Ollie Pope (Surrey), Ollie Robinson (Sussex), Olly Stone (Warwickshire).

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