Manchester: Fast bowler Jofra Archer has returned to the 14-member England squad alongside James Anderson and Mark Wood. Jofra Archer and the two others are in line for selection for the series-deciding final Test against the West Indies. The third game of the series starts at the Old Trafford here Friday.
The 25-year-old Archer was dropped from the second Test for breaching the COVID-19 bio-secure protocol. He was slapped with a financial penalty of an undisclosed amount. While Archer was dropped from the series-levelling second Test, Anderson and Wood were rested from the game.
Archer, Anderson and Wood will compete with the pace trio of Stuart Broad, Chris Woakes and Sam Curran for places in England’s playing XI.
It will be interesting to see England’s pace attack for the third Test as the trio of Broad, Curran and Woakes has performed well in the second Test.
England, though, has retained the same batting line-up with out-of-form wicket-keeper batsman Joss Buttler getting yet another opportunity to return among runs.
The teams are locked at 1-1 after the first two games. West Indies had won the first Test by four wickets at Southampton. England levelled the series with a 113-run victory in the second game here. Incidentally the series marks the resumption of international cricket amid the COVID-19 pandemic.
West Indies have the opportunity to register a first Test series win in England since 1988. However, the hosts are keen to reclaim the Wisden Trophy and maintain their six-year unbeaten record at home.
England squad: Joe Root (captain), James Anderson, Jofra Archer, Dominic Bess, Stuart Broad, Rory Burns, Jos Buttler, Zak Crawley, Sam Curran, Ollie Pope, Dom Sibley, Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes and Mark Wood.