Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Pace bowler Jofra Archer, spinner Liam Dawson and batsman James Vince have been included in England’s finalised squad for the World Cup.
Archer has replaced left-arm seamer David Willey, who took four wickets in three ODIs against Pakistan at an average of 49.50.
As for Archer, who was not part of England’s preliminary World Cup squad, he claimed two wickets in two games at an average of 34.
Like Archer, Dawson also wasn’t part of the initial World Cup team England announced, but he has taken Joe Denly’s place in the side.
Denly scored 17 runs in three ODIs against Pakistan at an average of 17 and didn’t take any wickets.
As for Vince, who 76 runs in three games against Pakistan at an average of 38, he will replace Alex Hales, who was axed from the squad after failing two tests for recreational drugs.
“It was a very difficult decision,” national selector Ed Smith was quoted as saying by ESPNcricinfo. “David Willey was very unfortunate in missing out, he could easily have been in this World Cup squad, but that’s sport. Sometimes there are more deserving people than there are places in the squad.”
Smith noted that Denly will now play first class cricket for Kent with the aim of securing a place for himself in England’s Ashes squad.
“He’s very clear in his situation, there were two things that could have happened,” Smith said. “One, he would have been the World Cup squad. The other one is he goes back to Kent, has a good block of four-day matches before the challenges in the second half of the summer. So he was very clear that both avenues were possible to him.”
Providing more details on why Dawson was preferred over Denly, Smith said: “Do you tend towards someone who’s mainly a batter who also is a very handy bowler in Joe Denly, or do you tend towards someone who’s tilted more towards the bowling side of it but is also a handy batter? It could have gone either way.
“I would say that everyone in the room was comfortable with the squad that the selection panel has come up with. And I think it was very important for me as a selector, that the captain feels comfortable with the squad he takes into the World Cup.
“Eoin has been captain for over four years, the England one day side has done extremely well, this is the culmination of a long campaign, a lot of planning, the culture of that team has been very strong under Eoin Morgan. He’s very comfortable with the squad, as we all are.”
As for Archer, Smith admitted that he lived up to all the hype during the limited overs series against Pakistan.
“We’ve seen Jofra Archer playing for England over the last few weeks, and we’ve seen the skills and the quality he has,” Smith said. “It’s pretty straightforward isn’t it? He’s a very good cricketer, very talented, a very exciting player. He has pace, bounce, athleticism, skill with the bat, he’s an outstanding talent, that was clear to all of us. He’s made a very good start to his England career and long may that continue.”
England will take on South Africa in the opening game of the World Cup at The Oval on May 30.
England’s World Cup Squad: Eoin Morgan (c), Jason Roy, Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root, James Vince, Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Moeen Ali, Adil Rashid, Chris Woakes, Liam Plunkett, Tom Curran, Liam Dawson, Jofra Archer, Mark Wood