Chris Woakes has been omitted from England’s XI for the Lord’s Test against Ireland beginning on June 1. Meanwhile, Worcestershire fast bowler Josh Tongue is poised to make his debut after being added to the squad last week as cover for injured veterans James Anderson and Ollie Robinson, who will miss the one-off match due to groin and ankle injuries, respectively.
In February’s second unofficial England Lions test against Sri Lanka A, 25-year-old Tongue impressed with figures of 5 for 34 and 3 for 77. The right-armer, who has 162 First-Class wickets in 82 innings, will make his début at the legendary Lord’s only a year after he was contemplating retirement after a 15-month shoulder injury-induced layoff.
“It’s an incredible sensation. Honestly, I am without words. Even from the time I received my first invitation to join the squad, being a part of the actual team is a fantasy come true. Today, Baz [Coach Brendon McCullum] approached me just before training concluded. “I had just finished a gym session when he approached me with the good news,” Tongue said following the team’s announcement.
Coach McCullum referred to the pacer as a “rough diamond,” and England may want to polish him to bolster their severely depleted pace inventories with Jofra Archer, Olly Stone, Jamie Overton, and Brydon Carse out for the foreseeable future with injuries.
McCullum stated categorically, “He is a big, strong boy.” It appears that he bowls quite quickly and has genuine skill. He is evidently a diamond in the rough. Throughout his career, he has endured a number of injuries, so it is advantageous for him to have a lengthy injury-free streak this summer to bolster his case.
“Because we believe he has something extremely exciting, we have added him to the team.” I am uncertain as to whether he will participate in this Test or throughout the summer, but he is yet another player who possesses tremendous talent.”
England’s batting order against Ireland consists of Zak Crawley, Ben Duckett, Ollie Pope, Joe Root, Harry Brook, Ben Stokes (c), Jonny Bairstow (wk), Stuart Broad, Matthew Potts, Josh Tongue, and Jack Leach.