No changes as England stick with winning team for tour of West Indies

NEW CHALLENGE: England TEst captain Joe Root gestures to the umpire during the third Test against Sri Lanka in Colombo last month. Picture: AP/Eranga Jayawardena.
NEW CHALLENGE: England TEst captain Joe Root gestures to the umpire during the third Test against Sri Lanka in Colombo last month. Picture: AP/Eranga Jayawardena.
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England have kept faith with the squad that delivered a historic Test whitewash in Sri Lanka, naming the same 16 players that finished that tour for next month’s series against the West Indies.

That means no place for Surrey’s Ollie Pope, who was initially selected for Sri Lanka but left early to get game time with the Lions, and a reprieve for Kent’s Joe Denly.

Alex has been a central part of the white-ball team for a number of years. He’s currently missed out on selection at times but when he’s got his opportunities, he’s taken them.

National selector Ed Smith

The uncapped 32-year-old was not required during the 3-0 win but will once again travel as batting cover for the three Tests, ahead of Pope and his overlooked county colleague Jason Roy.

Wicketkeeper Ben Foakes was a late addition in Sri Lanka after an injury to Jonny Bairstow and deservedly takes his place as a first-choice pick after collecting man-of-the-series honours at the first time of asking.

The 15-man one-day squad also has a familiar look as the countdown to next summer’s World Cup continues.

Left-armer David Willey returns and Mark Wood is included ahead of Olly Stone, who made his bow in Sri Lanka.

Ben Stokes and Alex Hales have both been named in the ODI squad less than a week after a disciplinary hearing into their roles in a fight outside a Bristol nightclub in 2017, with all-rounder Stokes also in the Test squad.

National selector Ed Smith: “Ben is obviously in all England formats and is one of our leading cricketers in this country.

“Alex has been a central part of the white-ball team for a number of years. He’s currently missed out on selection at times but when he’s got his opportunities, he’s taken them.

“So nothing has changed. They are available for selection, they have been selected and that’s the situation - that’s what appropriate for me to consider as a selector.

“They’ve been through the various processes, they have made their statements, the ECB has made its statement, that has now passed and we return to the job at hand which is to select the best possible squads for England.”