James Vince has been recalled to the England squad for the fourth Test against India at Southampton.
The 27-year-old Hampshire captain last played for England in Christchurch in April against New Zealand but was dropped from Ed Smith’s first squad of the summer as Jos Buttler was recalled.
The fluent right-hander has been in excellent form in the County Championship, averaging 56 in Division One this summer, and made scores of 74 and 147 for his county in their win against Nottinghamshire at the Ageas Bowl this week.
Vince returns as cover for Jonny Bairstow who could be ruled out due to a finger injury sustained at Edgbaston, with Buttler set to keep wicket.
“The selection panel felt this was the right time to reintroduce James Vince to the Test squad, national selector Smith said. “James will provide cover in case Jonny Bairstow’s fractured finger prevents him playing in the fourth Test match.
“James returns to the England set-up in confident form and scoring runs. He has been in excellent form for Hampshire in the County Championship, with 847 runs at 56.46, including 74 and 147 this week – runs that shaped Hampshire’s win against Nottinghamshire. James’ match-winning runs also helped Hampshire to win the Royal London One-Day Cup earlier this summer.”
If Vince is recalled at his home ground, it could allow Ollie Pope and possibly Joe Root to move a place down the order. Moeen Ali, fresh from a double century for Worcestershire, retains his place in the squad and could also feature. But it might be that England prefer an extra right-hander in their line-up.
Meanwhile Essex seamer Jamie Porter, who has not yet been called upon, has been released from the squad to free him up for county fixtures.
“Jamie Porter has been part of the last three Test squads,” Smith said. “But the selection panel did not want him to miss the opportunity of playing for Essex in the next round of Championship matches. He will return to the squad in the event of an injury to a seam bowler.”
England squad for fourth Test
Joe Root (Yorkshire) captain
Moeen Ali (Worcestershire)
Jimmy Anderson (Lancashire)
Jonny Bairstow (Yorkshire)
Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire)
Jos Buttler (Lancashire)
Alastair Cook (Essex)
Sam Curran (Surrey)
Keaton Jennings (Lancashire)
Ollie Pope (Surrey)
Adil Rashid (Yorkshire)
Ben Stokes (Durham)
James Vince (Hampshire)
Chris Woakes (Warwickshire)