ENG vs NZ: England name 15-man squad for Test series against New Zealand

Cricket Board has announced a 15-man squad for the two-match Test series against New Zealand set to undergo on Wednesday, June 2, 2021, at the Lord’s stadium.

England will miss both Ben Stokes, who injured his finger in the now-suspended 14th edition of the Indian Premier League last month, and Jofra Archer, whose elbow injury has resurfaced after participating for Sussex in the County Championship. All-format players Moeen Ali, Jonathan Bairstow, Jos Buttler, Sam Curran and Chris Woakes have been rested after completing a quarantine period following the IPL cancellation.

Wicketkeeper-batter James Bracey and pacer Ollie Robinson have earned their maiden call-ups after impressive stints at the County Championships for Gloucestershire and Sussex respectively. Notably, both Bracey and Robinson were included in the extended squads in the last summer as cricket resumed after a pandemic-enforced break with West Indies and Pakistan touring England.

The duo was also a part of the England Test team as reserves during the winter tour of Asia, where England blanked Sri Lanka 2-0 before losing 3-1 against India, however, neither of them got an opportunity there.

Meanwhile, Craig Overton, who last wore whites for the nation against Australia in 2019 at Manchester, has been recalled. The Somerset all-rounder will be keen to add to his four Test caps in the crucial home series to solidify his credentials.

Playing New Zealand, India is the perfect preparation for Ashes: Chris Silverwood

England Men’s Head Coach, Chris Silverwood, said: “The summer of Test cricket will be fascinating. Playing the top two teams in the world, in New Zealand and India, is the perfect preparation for us as we continue to improve and progress towards an Ashes series in Australia at the back end of the year.

“James Bracey and Ollie Robinson deserve their call ups to the Test squad. They have been consistent performers in the County Championship this season and over the past 18 months, have excelled for the Lions on the field and in the various camps, they have been involved in,” Silverwood added. 

England Squad: Joe Root, James Anderson, James Bracey, Stuart BroadRory Burns, Zak Crawley, Ben Foakes, Dan Lawrence, Jack Leach, Craig Overton, Ollie Pope, Ollie Robinson, Dom Sibley, Olly Stone, Mark Wood