ENG vs IRE: Why is Chris Woakes Not Playing England vs Ireland Test?

Updated on: Jun 2, 2023 12:19 pm IST

ENG vs IRE Why is Chris Woakes Not Playing

In a surprising decision, England all-rounder Chris Woakes has been left out of the playing XI for the ongoing one-off Test against Ireland at Lord’s. Woakes, who last played a Test match for England 14 months ago during the West Indies tour, was not included in the team that was announced on the eve of the match.

Why is Chris Woakes Not Playing England vs Ireland Test?

England captain Ben Stokes, after winning the toss and electing to bowl first, revealed the team changes from their previous Test against New Zealand three months ago. Wicket-keeper batter Ben Foakes was dropped to make room for Jonny Bairstow, while pacers James Anderson and Ollie Robinson were unavailable due to groin and ankle issues, respectively.

The surprise exclusion of Chris Woakes has raised eyebrows among cricket fans and experts. Woakes, a seasoned player with 45 Test matches under his belt, has been a valuable asset to the England team in the past. However, it appears that the selectors have opted to give opportunities to other players and test new talent in preparation for the upcoming Ashes series.

The young pacers Matthew Potts and Josh Tongue have been given the chance to showcase their skills. Tongue, making his international debut, has been preferred over Woakes due to his right-arm fast bowling capabilities and the X-factor he brings to the team.

England’s decision to include Tongue over Woakes suggests a focus on nurturing young talent and exploring different options in their bowling attack. With the Ashes series on the horizon, England wants to assess the potential of promising players like Tongue, who could potentially add depth and variety to their bowling lineup.

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Captain Ben Stokes acknowledged that leaving out Woakes was a tough decision but highlighted that Woakes understood the rationale behind the team’s unconventional move. The England management aims to make the most of this opportunity to evaluate the abilities of Tongue and other newcomers, ensuring they have a well-rounded squad for future challenges.

As the 1st Test between England and Ireland gets underway at Lord’s, all eyes will be on the performance of the players chosen in place of Woakes. Fans will be eager to see how the new faces contribute to the team and whether their selection proves to be a fruitful decision in the long run.

“It was a hard decision to make. We know Woakesy is a very experienced player and what he will offer this team when he plays. We see this as a great opportunity to see someone like Josh Tongue go out and play in a Test.

“It gives me an opportunity to see what his character is like and what he is like to operate with as a captain. Woakesy completely understood that.”

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