Manchester: Wicketkeeper-batsman Jos Buttler and left-arm spinner Jack Leach returned to the England squad Tuesday. The England squad has been picked for the fifth and final Test against India beginning September 10 here. England are 1-2 down in the five-match series and will be desperate to square matters.
Buttler had missed the fourth Test due to the birth of his second child. “Batsman Sam Billings, who was included in the fourth Test squad, has returned to Kent,” the ECB said in a statement.
England have not lost a Test series to India at home since 2007. They are under pressure to save the five-match rubber here.
There is a good chance that pacer Mark Woods will return to the playing XI in place of James Anderson. The latter could be rested after featuring in four Tests that England played.
“He’s (Wood) certainly someone who comes back into contention. We have got some aching bodies, I’m not going to deny that. So we obviously have to keep an eye on that. He could come back and if he does, he will obviously add that pace for us. If the pitch is abrasive as it usually is at Old Trafford there should be reverse swing. He’s certainly back in contention,” said England coach Chris Silverwood.
“It’ll be a discussion that he and I (James Anderson) will have together. He will have input into that, without a shadow of a doubt. James knows his own body,” informed Silverwood when asked if Anderson is to be rested.
“We have got a bit of time now between this game and the next one. I know what it’s like, he won’t want to miss any cricket. We have to make sure we look after him. Although there is a gap between the final Test and what’s in front of him he’s certainly someone I want to make sure is looked after,” added the England coach.
Joe Root (captain), Moeen Ali, James Anderson, Jonathan Bairstow, Rory Burns, Jos Buttler, Sam Curran, Haseeb Hameed, Dan Lawrence, Jack Leach, Dawid Malan, Craig Overton, Ollie Pope, Ollie Robinson, Chris Woakes and Mark Wood.