Sophia Dunkley in action for South East Stars in the Charlotte Edwards Cup

On Friday, England Women revealed their squad for the upcoming home ODI series against New Zealand. The announcement included a return of batter Sophia Dunkley.   

Dunkley was initially left out for the home ODIs and T20Is against Pakistan in May, but earned a recall towards the end of the ODI series, to provide injury cover. Dunkley did not get on the pitch, though. Her last appearance in England colours came in an ODI in April this year, during the tour of New Zealand.

The last 18 months or so have been difficult for her form-wise. Her last ten ODI innings have seen six single-digit scores, with just two knocks over 15. Her T20I form has not been much better either. However, the ongoing Rachael Heyhoe-Flint Trophy has provided her with an opportunity to play herself back into form, which she has done with aplomb.

Dunkley has made 293 runs in five innings for the South East Stars at a strike rate of 83 runs per 100 balls, prompting her selection for the upcoming series. She has also been in good touch in the Charlotte Edwards Cup (T20), with 194 runs from six innings.

Her improvement was noted by head coach Jon Lewis, who said, "We welcomed Sophia Dunkley back into the squad at the end of the Pakistan series as her performance across the domestic game has been outstanding and she earned the right to be back in this squad through performance." 

The squad selected for this series is identical to the one that used against Pakistan in May. Lewis made note of this during the announcement, saying, "We have named the same squad who finished the recent series against Pakistan. I felt we played some solid 50-over cricket in that series and have had excellent results over the past 18 months."

The ODIs will take place in Durham (June 26), Worcester (June 30) and Bristol (July 3). The sides are also scheduled to play a five-match T20I series immediately afterwards, but England are yet to announce their squad for those matches.  

England Women squad for New Zealand series: Full list of players

Batters: Heather Knight (c), Tammy Beaumont, Maia Bouchier, Danni Wyatt, Sophia Dunkleu

Bowlers: Lauren Bell, Kate Cross, Sophie Ecclestone, Lauren Filer, Sarah Glenn, Charlie Dean

All-rounders: Alice Capsey, Nat Sciver-Brunt

Wicketkeepers: Amy Jones