Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
England head coach Peter Moores has announced that it has become “very difficult” to select spinner Monty Panesar due to his issues both on and off the field.
Panesar was fined for urinating on a bouncer outside a nightclub last year and he was recently dropped from the Essex squad due to timekeeping issues.
Moores also made it clear that it was highly unlikely that Panesar would be picked to play in the second Test against Sri Lanka at Headingley.
“Monty is the most experienced Test match bowler but through other issues he has made it very difficult to look at him at the moment as an option,” Moores said. “The key is to…put himself up for selection like anyone else. Monty has to get himself in that place.”
With England desperately needing a frontline spinner, one name that has come into the fray is Kent spinner Adam Riley, who has taken 33 wickets at a brilliant average of 27.24 in the ongoing county season.
However, Moores also hinted that Simon Kerrigan has a good chance of becoming England’s next go-to spinner.
“Kerrigan statistically has been the most prolific in first-class cricket,” he said. “If you take that as one of the gauges it puts him in the frame. Obviously Riley has come on the scene.
“We are going to have to identify our next spinner, there’s no doubt about that. All sides need the option of a frontline spinner. [One, or a couple] are going to have to play for us to be able to cover all options…otherwise it is going to be a weakness in our ranks that people will be able to try to exploit.”
For the time being though, England seem to have entrusted the position to Moeen Ali, who dismissed Sri Lanka veteran batsman Kumar Sangakkara during the first Test at Lord’s to claim his maiden Test wicket.
“I think he has the chance at the moment,” Moores said. “He is getting better quite quickly. He is going to have to adjust to take wickets as a Test match bowler.”