Joe Root and Yorkshire teammates forced into isolation as Covid-19 outbreak forces England to name completely new squad for Pakistan series
England have named an entirely new squad to face Pakistan in their one-day series, which starts on Thursday, after their existing roster of players – including Sheffield’s Joe Root – were forced into Covid-19 isolation.
The entire England squad took PCR tests in Bristol on Monday following the third ODI against Sri Lanka, with three unnamed players and four members of the backroom team returning positive results. The remainder of the group were identified as close contacts, forcing all parties into a period of isolation in line with public health guidelines.
Root was in the squad for the Sri Lanka series, as were his Yorkshire teammates Adil Rashid, David Willey and Jonny Bairstow.
England have instead named a replacement squad for the one-day series against Pakistan, with Ben Stokes making a quick return from a broken finger and Yorkshire’s Dawid Malan being called up.
There was no place, though, for Alex Hales, one of the brightest one-day talents in the country who has been in the international wilderness since being discarded on the eve of the 2019 World Cup following a positive recreational drugs test.
Stokes is the only member of the squad to have played more than 20 ODIs. Zak Crawley and Dan Lawrence, who have played Tests for England, have been handed their first opportunities in limited-overs cricket and are joined by Durham's Brydon Carse, Middlesex pair Tom Helm and John Simpson, Surrey's Will Jacks, Gloucestershire's David Payne, Somerset's Lewis Gregory and Phil Salt of Sussex.
Returning to the fold after absences of varying lengths are Craig Overton, Danny Briggs, Jake Ball, Ben Duckett, Saqib Mahmood, Matt Parkinson and James Vince.