England made no changes to the squad that defeated India in the second Test but the omission of Ben Stokes is startling.
Ben Stokes who is undergoing a trial is set to miss out the third Test as well as England announced unchanged squad for the third Test.
The England team is riding high on confidence as they demolished India at the Lord’s in the second Test. England won the Test in just 170 overs and registered a thumping win.
However, the biggest news was the absence of Ben Stokes from the squad. Stokes’ trial will most probably conclude before the third Test commences but an official statement from ECB stated that the team management will review position of Stokes after the conclusion of the trial.
Ben Stokes played a pivotal role in the first Test which England won narrowly. Defending a low total in the fourth innings, Stokes claimed four wickets including the prize wicket of Virat Kohli to take England home.
But England didn’t feel his absence in the second Test as his replacement Chris Woakes bowled well and also produced a hundred that won him the man-of-the-match award.
The two members of the 13 member squad who haven’t played a game yet in this series are Jamie Porter and Moeen Ali. Considering the fabulous form of England’s pace battery it is certain that Porter will sit out in the third Test as well.
Adil Rashid didn’t bowl or bat in the second Test. Hence questions over his place in the team are on the rise and it might tempt the team management to swap him with Moeen Ali whose batting abilities are better than that of Rashid. However, this decision will depend on how much confidence Joe Root has in Moeen’s off-spin bowling.
Ollie Pope who made his debut in the previous Test is set to retain his position while Keaton Jennings and Jos Butler who haven’t fared well either will also get another chance to prove their mettle.
England’s squad for the third Test beginning on 18th August – Alastair Cook, Keaton Jennings, Joe Root, Ollie Pope Jonny Bairstow (wkt), Jos Butler, Chris Woakes, Sam Curran, Adil Rashid, Stuart Broad, James Anderson, Moeen Ali, Jamie Porter.