On Wednesday, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced the 17-member squad for the first two Tests of the upcoming five-match series against India.

All-rounder Ben Stokes has returned to whites after missing the two-match series against New Zealand at home. The 30-year-old was ruled out of the Kiwi series due to his finger injury. However, he recently made a comeback to the international arena when he captained the English ODI team in the three-match leg against Pakistan.

Speedster Ollie Robinson, who made his Test debut in the New Zealand series, has also been included in the outfit along with Haseeb Hameed.

Hameed last featured in England’s red-ball squad during the India tour in 2016. He was added as a cover to England’s squad for the Test fixtures against New Zealand last month.

Meanwhile, pacer Jofra Archer and all-rounder Chris Woakes have not been included in the squad because of their respective injuries.

“A home Test series against India is one of the most anticipated red-ball series, and this promises to be an outstanding five Tests. India are a quality team who have shown their ability to get results away from home. We are expecting a highly competitive series and have selected our strongest possible squad,” said England head coach Chris Silverwood as quoted by Cricbuzz.

“The returns of all-rounders Ben Stokes and Sam Curran provide a balance that allows us to get back to a structure that has been successful in Test cricket. Ben’s leadership in the series against Pakistan, when he played despite his finger not yet being 100 per cent, typified his character and commitment that drives the players around him forward. With Jos and Jonny back in the squad, we have added further experience and quality that will be needed against the world’s second-ranked team,” he added.

The Test series between England and India starts from August 04 at Trent Bridge in Nottingham. This series shall also mark the beginning of the second cycle of the World Test Championship (WTC) 2021-23.

England’s squad for the first two Tests against India:

Joe Root (c), James Anderson, Jonny Bairstow, Dom Bess, Stuart Broad, Rory Burns, Jos Buttler, Zak Crawley, Sam Curran, Haseeb Hameed, Dan Lawrence, Jack Leach, Ollie Pope, Ollie Robinson, Dom Sibley, Ben Stokes, Mark Wood.

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