James Anderson, Sam Billings Named in England’s 15-man Squad For Rescheduled Test Against India

The ECB on Monday announced England’s 15-man squad for the rescheduled fifth Test match against India. The series-decider will be played in Birmingham on Friday. The hosts have included wicketkeeper batter Sam Billings into the squad. While James Anderson who missed the third Test match against New Zealand also get selected for the team.

Billings was the replacement for Ben Foakes in the third Test match against Kiwis after he was tested COVID-19 positive during the match. India were leading the series 2-1 last year before the final Test was abandoned owing to a COVID-19 outbreak in the visitors’ camp.

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Anderson is one wicket away from registering 650 wickets in Tests. He could have done that in Leeds if he was not rested for the third Test. He will most probably reunite with his long-time bowling partner Stuart Broad, who has already gone past the 550-wickets mark in the longest format of the game.

However, the dynamics have completely changed in both camps since last time as both teams have got new captains in Ben Stokes and Rohit Sharma along with new head coaches in Rahul Dravid and Brendon McCullum.

Under Stokes and McCullum, England have started playing an attacking brand of cricket as they completed a 3-0 series whitewash against New Zealand after winning the third and final Test by seven wickets on Monday.

Meanwhile, India played a four-day warm-up match against Leicestershire to get used to the English conditions.

Few of the Indian batters including Ravindra Jadeja, Shreyas Iyer and others got multiple chances to bat in the innings to get some practice time in Leicester.

Former India captain Virat Kohli looked in sublime touch with a fifty in the second innings, apart from him Shubman Gill, Iyer and Jadeja also struck half-centuries during the drawn warm-up game.

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Meanwhile, Mayank Agarwal has been added to India’s squad for the rescheduled fifth Test against England as cover for captain Rohit Sharma who has Covid-19, the India cricket board said on Monday.

England squad: Ben Stokes (c), James Anderson, Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root, Sam Billings, Stuart Broad, Harry Brook, Zak Crawley, Ben Foakes, Jack Leach, Alex Lees, Craig Overton, Jamie Overton, Matthew Potts, Ollie Pope

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