Bracey, Robinson get England Test calls, Stokes 'making excellent progress'

By Sports Desk May 18, 2021

James Bracey and Ollie Robinson have been handed their first England Test call-ups, while Craig Overton earns a recall to a 15-man squad.

Chris Silverwood's options have been limited for the two-match home series against New Zealand next month.

Superstar all-rounder Ben Stokes (finger) and fast bowler Jofra Archer (elbow) are both injured, while Moeen Ali, Jonny Bairstow, Jos Buttler, Sam Curran and Chris Woakes are all rested after completing a quarantine period following their return home from the postponed Indian Premier League.

It means wicketkeeper-batsman Bracey and seamer Robinson both get the call, rewarded for impressive performances in the early stages of the County Championship season.

Bracey averages 37.30 across his first-class career, but is at an impressive 53 – courtesy of 478 runs – for Gloucestershire so far this season. Robinson, meanwhile, has claimed 29 wickets at just 14 apiece for Sussex.

Both men have already toured with England as reserves in Sri Lanka and India, while they were included in extended groups for the Tests last year against West Indies and Pakistan.

Somerset all-rounder Overton, who has four caps, is set to return to the fold for the first time since the 2019 Ashes.

Head coach Silverwood said: "The summer of Test cricket will be fascinating.

"Playing the top two teams in the world, in New Zealand and India, is perfect preparation for us as we continue to improve and progress towards an Ashes series in Australia at the back end of the year. 

"With several players not available through injury or being rested for the New Zealand series, it is an opportunity for us to reward those who have been on the fringes of England squads over the past 12 months."

Silverwood also provided an update on Stokes, adding: "Ben Stokes is making excellent progress following his fractured left index finger sustained last month in the Indian Premier League.

"If he continues to improve without any impact on his rehabilitation, we could see him return next month for Durham in the Vitality Blast competition.

"We will assess him again towards the end of this month."

Archer had been ruled out on Sunday after a persistent elbow injury flared up again on his return to action for Sussex.

"We need to get this resolved once and for all to give him the best chance of being fully fit as we build up to an intense winter, which will include a T20 World Cup and the Ashes," Silverwood said.

"We need him firing in all formats of the game."


England squad in full:

Joe Root (captain), James Anderson, James Bracey, Stuart Broad, Rory Burns, Zak Crawley, Ben Foakes, Dan Lawrence, Jack Leach, Craig Overton, Ollie Pope, Ollie Robinson, Dom Sibley, Olly Stone, Mark Wood.

Related items

  • India edge ahead after Williamson holds New Zealand together India edge ahead after Williamson holds New Zealand together

    The World Test Championship final remains delicately poised after India ended the penultimate day at the Ageas Bowl on 64-2, giving them a slender lead of 32 runs.

    After Monday's play was washed out at a sodden Southampton, New Zealand finally moved on from 101-2 to post 249 in their first innings, captain Kane Williamson pointing the way with 49.

    There were also useful runs from the lower order – Kyle Jamieson and Tim Southee contributed 21 and 30 respectively – as the Black Caps managed to overhaul India's total of 217.

    Trailing by 32 as they came out to bat for a second time, India lost opener Shubman Gill, trapped lbw by Southee for eight, before they had erased the deficit in the final session.

    Rohit Sharma also fell to the same bowler for 30 in the closing stages of proceedings, leaving Cheteshwar Pujara and Virat Kohli to see their side to the close. They will resume on 12 and eight respectively.

    New Zealand will hope to make early inroads on the sixth and final day, which was added by the International Cricket Council as a provision for time being lost to bad weather.

    Mohammed Shami helped restrict New Zealand's advantage with 4-76, including dismissing BJ Watling and Colin de Grandhomme as the Kiwis slipped to 162-6.

    Yet the resolute Williamson remained, producing a crucial 177-ball knock that included six fours. His vigil finally came to an end when he was well caught by opposite number Kohli at a wide third slip off Ishant Sharma when one shy of a half-century.

    Spin duo Ravichandran Ashwin and Ravindra Jadeja wrapped up the innings, though New Zealand's wagging tail means they appear the more likely winners on Wednesday.


    Go-slow approach sees Kane able to move up

    During his battling knock, Williamson surpassed Stephen Fleming (7,172) to become New Zealand's second highest run-scorer in Test cricket on 7,178, only behind current team-mate Ross Taylor (7,517) on the list. The latter reached a personal milestone while making 11, bringing up 18,000 international runs across all formats.

    Shami shines with leather but still comes up short

    Despite Kohli giving him every opportunity, Shami was unable to register his sixth five-wicket haul in Tests. The pace bowler produced a beauty to dismiss Watling, bowling the wicketkeeper for just one as India sensed the opportunity to seize a first-innings lead.

  • 'I just didn't get any runs, full stop' - WI opener Brathwaite insists burden of captaincy not cause of poor showing 'I just didn't get any runs, full stop' - WI opener Brathwaite insists burden of captaincy not cause of poor showing

    West Indies captain Kraigg Brathwaite has insisted the average responsibility of leading the team has not had a negative impact on his batting performances.

    Brathwaite, who took over as captain of the team from Jason Holder in February, had his worse performance at the of the order in some time, in the recently concluded South Africa series.

    In two matches, the 28-year-old batsman could only manage a high score of 15 and in total scored 28 runs, which included an early duck in the first innings of the second match.  Prior to heading into the series, the batsman had averaged 33.43, including scores of 126 and 85 against Sri Lanka in the previous series.

    The batsman has, however, rejected notions of added responsibility for the team impacting his performance at the crease.

    “I’m not feeling any pressure.  I enjoy captaining.  I didn’t get any runs as the opening batsman I just didn’t get any runs full stop,” Brathwaite told members of the media.

    The player has targeted looking at a few technical issues and better mental preparation ahead of the next series.

    “Opening the batting isn’t easy, but it’s a very crucial job because it basically sets up the game to make it easier for guys that follow and we didn’t do that and it put us on the backfoot for most of the time,” he added.

     

     

     

  • England duo Mount and Chilwell told to isolate up to and including June 28 England duo Mount and Chilwell told to isolate up to and including June 28

    England duo Mason Mount and Ben Chilwell will miss the match with the Czech Republic and must self-isolate up to and including June 28.

    It was confirmed on Monday that the Chelsea players had begun isolating after being deemed close contacts of Billy Gilmour, who tested positive for coronavirus after Scotland's 0-0 draw with England at Wembley last Friday.

    The Football Association said the precautions had been taken after consultation with Public Health England, despite both players returning negative PCR and lateral flow test results.

    On Tuesday, the FA said Chilwell and Mount will train individually in private areas of England's St. George's Park base, where the rest of the squad will return after their final Group D match with the Czech Republic.

    It means that, should England win and top the group, Mount and Chilwell will miss the last-16 match, which takes place on June 29.

    If Gareth Southgate's side fail to take three points, they will finish second in the group behind the Czech Republic, meaning their first knockout match will be on June 28.

    England said via Twitter: "We can confirm that Ben Chilwell and Mason Mount must isolate up to and including next Monday [28 June]. This decision has been taken in consultation with Public Health England.

    "The pair were confirmed overnight as close contacts of Scotland’s Billy Gilmour after his positive test following last Friday's match.

    "Chilwell and Mount will isolate and train individually in private areas at England’s training base St. George's Park, with the rest of the squad returning there after tonight's fixture against Czech Republic at Wembley.

    "We will continue to follow all COVID-19 protocols and the UEFA testing regime, while remaining in close contact with PHE.

    "The entire England squad and staff had lateral flow tests on Monday and all were again negative, as was the case with Sunday's UEFA pre-match PCR tests. 

    "Further tests will be carried out as and when appropriate."

© 2020 SportsMaxTV All Rights Reserved.