England name strong squad for Ashes tour after quarantine fears
England were able to name their strongest available team for the Ashes tour of Australia on Sunday as their stars embarked on the trip after coronavirus quarantine fears.
The Ashes tour had been the subject of tense negotiations after England players and their families expressed concerns over the strict quarantine restrictions of Covid in Australia.
England test captain Joe Root and vice-captain Jos Buttler have both hinted they might not travel if their fears aren’t allayed.
But following a breakthrough in talks with Cricket Australia, the England and Wales Cricket Council said on Friday it had given “conditional approval” for the tour to continue.
Root and Buttler were both named to the 17-man squad for the tour and there were no Covid exclusions, with Essex drummer Dan Lawrence being the most eye-catching selection.
“A tour of Australia is the pinnacle as an England Test cricketer. I am delighted that all of our available players have signed up for the tour,” said England head coach Chris Silverwood.
“That’s why we play and coach to be part of iconic series like this. More than half of our team has never been on an Ashes tour before, which means we’ll be fresh and looking to embrace the cricket and the excitement of touring one of the best places in the world. “
Veterans James Anderson and Stuart Broad lead the bowling alley for what may well be their swan songs Ashes, with support from fellow hosts Chris Woakes, Mark Wood and Ollie Robinson.
Broad will begin his fourth Ashes tour after making “excellent progress” following a torn right calf suffered during the Test series against India.
Moeen Ali’s retirement from Test action has cleared the way for Jack Leach and Dom Bess to occupy two spinner slots.
Haseeb Hameed is traveling despite the lack of a central contract this week.
– ‘Create a little history’ –
Buttler, Woakes, Wood, Jonny Bairstow and Dawid Malan will all travel to Australia after a month with England at the Twenty20 World Cup in the United Arab Emirates.
As expected, England lack fast bowlers Jofra Archer and Olly Stone due to elbow and back injuries respectively.
Ben Stokes, who is currently recovering from finger surgery, has been left out as the all-round star continues on an indefinite hiatus due to mental health concerns.
Surrey all-rounder Sam Curran was not considered for selection after a second scan confirmed he suffered from a stress fracture in his lower back.
Australia are the current Ashes holders after retaining the ballot box following a 2-2 draw in England in 2019.
They won the last series “Down Under” 4-0 in 2017/18.
Defeated in six of their last nine tests, the England squad has 10 players who will tour Australia for the first time as part of an Ashes series.
“I think we have selected a well-rounded squad with options across the board and a mix of youth and experience. There is real competition for places and a real desire to work hard and compete, in the field. purpose of creating a story, ”said Silverwood.
“We have no illusions about the difficulty of the task. Australia have been strong at home in the past and are expected to win this series.
“However, from our perspective, there is a real excitement and a belief that we can do something special.”
In addition to the main test team, England will also nominate another Lions team in due course.
This group will be on standby in the event of injury and serve as a warm-up opposition before the start of the five-game test series in Brisbane on December 8.
The ECB said the tour is still subject to “several critical conditions” met by Cricket Australia ahead of the team’s trip in November.
England’s 17-player tryout team:
Joe Root (capt), James Anderson, Jonathan Bairstow, Dom Bess, Stuart Broad, Rory Burns, Jos Buttler, Zak Crawley, Haseeb Hameed, Dan Lawrence, Jack Leach, Dawid Malan, Craig Overton, Ollie Pope, Ollie Robinson, Chris Woakes , Mark Wood
smg / pb