England Test squad: The new faces for Pakistan tour
The 15-man England Test squad to face Pakistan in December’s three-match series includes four players who have yet to feature under the Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum regime.
Keaton Jennings, Ben Duckett, Liam Livingstone and Will Jacks have all won call-ups so here we look at the quartet and what they could bring to the side.
Jennings may have thought international cricket had passed him by, but the 30-year-old opener has come again through sheer force of runs.
He made 1,233 of them for Lancashire this season and developed a penchant for going big – hitting a career-best 318 as well as a double ton and a 199.
Jennings averages just 25.19 from his 17 previous Test attempts but centuries in Mumbai and Galle are proof that he has a bankable method in Asian conditions.
Our 15-strong squad for our Test series in Pakistan! pic.twitter.com/8nPUGnmeXl
— England Cricket (@englandcricket) October 12, 2022
Duckett’s first shot in the England Test squad left plenty to be desired. He was worked over on big spinning pitches in Bangladesh and India back in 2016 and fell off the radar after a curious incident involving James Anderson and a wayward pint of beer.
But he is a much more complete cricketer now and impressed massively on the recent T20 tour of Pakistan, not least with his array of sweep shots.
England will feel they can plug the versatile Nottinghamshire batter in to any gap, including the top of the order.
A crucial member of England’s white-ball teams over the past couple of years and a marquee name on the franchise circuit.
Red-ball cricket appeared to have disappeared off his radar entirely, with no first-class appearances in the last 13 months and just eight in the past three seasons, but he represents the kind of wild card option Stokes and McCullum are drawn to for the England Test squad.
— England Cricket (@englandcricket) October 17, 2022
He is combative, powerful and ultra-aggressive. His ability to bowl both off and leg-spin is also intriguing and helps his cause on pitches where England will need options.
Long seen as one of the brightest stars of his generation, Jacks made a compelling case as he became integral to Surrey’s plans across the board in 2022.
Like Livingstone he combines hard-hitting batting with increasingly useful spin bowling and his development with the ball saw him climb past Amar Virdi and Dan Moriarty in the Brown Caps’ title-winning campaign.
A confident T20 debut in Pakistan showed he was unlikely to freeze on the big stage and his rise was underlined when he was named domestic ‘MVP’ at the recent PCA awards.
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