Unchanged England to assess Ben Stokes bowling fitness for fifth and Final Ashes
England will assess Ben Stokes ability to take part in this week’s fifth ashes test with Australia at the Oval as they seek a comforting victory after failing to recover the ashes. Stokes included in an unchanged 13-man English squad announced on Monday after 185-runs loss in the fourth ashes that secured Australia to keep the ashes 2–1 up with one to play in the five-test series.
Ben Stokes, England’s vice-captain, did not play in Australia’s second inning at Old Trafford after a shoulder injury sustained during his eleventh innings at the tourists’ first innings.
If Stokes is not in a position to play in the Oval, where he starts the fifth test on Thursday, he is expected to play as a specialist hitter: it was his impressive 135 not that led England to a dramatic victory of a wicket in the third test in Headingley.
In that case, England would look to bring in a bowler from the entire team, either in Sam Curran, who would be playing in his homeland of Surrey, or Chris Woakes.
If either of you plays if England’s coach, Trevor Bayliss, in what will be his last test before he retires from his post, and captain Joe Root makes a switch aside, it’s likely to mean one of the hitter specialist batting batsmen ions — having to make way.
England Squad for the fifth test: Craig Overton (Somerset), Jofra Archer (Sussex), Jack Leach (Somerset), Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire), Sam Curran (Surrey). Rory Burns (Surrey), Joe Denly (Kent), Joe Root (Yorkshire, capt), Jason Roy (Surrey), Ben Stokes (Durham), Jonny Bairstow (Yorkshire, wk), and Jos Buttler (Lancashire).
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