England have named a 12-man squad for the second Test against West Indies, omitting opening batsman Keaton Jennings and leg-spinner Adil Rashid. Captain Joe Root has confirmed Joe Denly will make his Test debut.
Left-arm spinner Jack Leach and veteran seamer Stuart Broad have also each been included, after being left out of the XI for the first Test, which England lost by 381 runs. Denly is set to open the batting, something he has done in first-class cricket at times, though he has more recently played at Nos. 3 and 4 for Kent in county cricket.
“It gives Joe an opportunity,” Root said. “It’s disappointing for Keaton [Jennings], he’s done some excellent things and he will continue to work on developing his game and be a big part of this squad.”
Jennings’ struggles against pace continued in the first Test. He was dismissed for 17 and 14, meaning he has now played 11 Tests outside Asia without making a half-century. He averages just 17.50 outside Asia.
Rashid went wicketless in the first Test, and was expensive in the second innings, bowling nine overs and leaking 61 runs. Leach, recalled after leading the wicket-takers’ charts in England’s whitewash of Sri Lanka, offers more control, and gives England’s attack balance if they opt for five bowlers.
With Stuart Broad seemingly set for a recall after Root admitted leaving him out for the first Test was “a mistake”, the identity of the fifth bowler would seem to be down to a choice between all-rounder Sam Curran, who England head coach Trevor Bayliss described as having “had the first bad Test in his career” in Barbados and Leach. Alternatively, England could play all six bowlers and leave out wicketkeeper Ben Foakes, their Player of the Series in Sri Lanka, with one of Jonny Bairstow or Jos Buttler taking up the gauntlets in his absence.
England 12-man squad for second Test: Rory Burns, Joe Denly, Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root (c), Jos Buttler, Ben Stokes, Moeen Ali, Ben Foakes, Sam Curran, Stuart Broad, Jimmy Anderson, Jack Leach.