The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) have announced the playing XI for their upcoming one-off Test against Ireland, set to be played at the iconic Lord’s from Thursday, June 1.
This one-off Test presents a golden opportunity for Ben Stokes-led England to fine-tune their strategies ahead of the highly-anticipated Ashes series against Australia.
One of the standout highlights from the squad announcement is the inclusion of Worcestershire seamer Josh Tongue, who is all set to make his Test debut as he finds a place in England’s playing XI.
Tongue will team up with experienced pacers Stuart Broad and Matthew Potts to form a formidable pace attack for the four-day match.
His recent performances in the County Championship have been impressive, with 11 wickets in four matches this season. Notably, Tongue dismissed Australia’s Steve Smith lbw during the Sussex match.
The XI to start a mega summer of cricket! 🏴🏏 pic.twitter.com/984fcr5mig— England Cricket (@englandcricket) May 30, 2023
Expressing delight on being called up to England’s playing XI, here’s what Josh Tongue had to say:
“It’s an amazing feeling. Speechless really, even from when I got the first call-up to be in the squad. Now being in the actual team, it’s just a dream come true really.
“Baz (coach Brendon McCullum) came up to me just before training finished today and gave me the good news. I bowled at some of the lads on Monday, I felt like I bowled nicely and obviously, I must have bowled fairly well to get selected.”
England has shown faith in the tried and tested opening combination of Zak Crawley and Ben Duckett, who have proven their worth in previous encounters, particularly during the team’s tours of Pakistan and New Zealand.
In the middle order, the newly appointed vice-captain Ollie Pope joins forces with Joe Root and Ben Stokes, forming a formidable trio. With the return of Jonny Bairstow from injury, he will bolster the lower-middle order alongside Harry Brook.
England Playing XI for the one-off Test against Ireland:
Ben Duckett, Zak Crawley, Ollie Pope, Joe Root, Harry Brook, Ben Stokes (c), Jonny Bairstow (wk), Stuart Broad, Matthew Potts, Josh Tongue (Debut), Jack Leach.