Continuing their old practice of announcing their starting XI on the eve of the Test match, England captain Joe Root has officially confirmed their playing XI for the first Test of the five-match series against India, starting on August 1 in Birmingham. Leg-spinner Adil Rashid and pacer Sam Curran have been included for the first Test, while in-form batsman Jos Buttler has been appointed as the new vice-captain of Three Lions for India series.
The 27-year old Buttler is already the vice-captain for England’s ODI side, ranked No. 1 in the latest ICC world rankings. He was recalled to the Test squad at the start of the summer for the series against Pakistan and scored two half-centuries in three innings.
The first Test between England and India also holds a special relevance for the home side as they will be making their 1000th appearance in the cricket’s most traditional format.
All-rounder Moeen Ali and medium pacer Jamie Porter have missed out on the starting XI from the 13-man squad named for the first Test.
Speaking about Rashid’s inclusion for the first Test, the England captain said: “With the amount of right handers in India’s team, Rashid gives us a really attacking spinning option and he’s in confident form.”
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“He’s gone about his business just as he does in the one-day side, he doesn’t seem affected at all. “I’ve known Adil for a long time. I think he’s grown as a player massively in the last couple of years, he has a better understanding of what he wants to do,” Root was quoted by ecb.co.uk.
On Buttler’s elevation to vice-captaincy in Test format, Root said: “Jos is vice-captain of the white-ball side, thinks hugely about the game and is respected in the dressing room.
“We are thinking about the long-term and Jos is a big part of that.”
England Playing XI against India for Edgbaston Test:
Alastair Cook, Keaton Jennings, Joe Root (C), Dawid Malan, Jonny Bairstow (wk), Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, Sam Curran, Adil Rashid, Stuart Broad, James Anderson