Jun 20

England Roster to Remain Unchanged for Third Test Against Sri Lanka

England captain Alastair Cook has announced that England’s team line-up will not be changed for their third and final test match against Sri Lanka. England have managed to prevail in the first two matches of the series, claiming victory by nine wickets in the second match.

Winners and Losers

Ben Stokes loses out as he is still undergoing rehabilitation after surgery to address a cartilage tear in his left knee, with a possible recovery time of six weeks. He was replaced in the second test by Chris Woakes. Woakes, all-rounder for Warwickshire, retains his spot into the third match, suggesting an unmodified bowling attack.

This means that Jake Ball, celebrated seamer at Nottinghamshire, once again misses out on his chance for an England test debut, having been relegated to 12th man after Cook underlined the importance of consistency in the roster. Jonny Bairstow is back on wicket keeping duties, having more than proved his worth with 16 catches and 1 stumping since joining the team in 2014.

Can England Keep the Momentum Going?

The performance of the English hosts in this three-match test series has been slightly shaky. Captain Cook came into the first match with just 36 runs before he would be the youngest player in history, as well as the first Englishman, to read the landmark of 10,000 test match runs. A negligible performance of Sri Lankan bowling looked set to give Cook his title, but he was caught behind for 16 after driving at a wide ball from celebrated Sri Lankan bowler Dasun Shanaka.

Cook finally claimed his achievement in the second test, but his dismissal from the first match shifted the mood, giving Sri Lanka the foothold they badly needed. Thanks to a solid bowling and wicket keeping partnership between Hales and Bairstow, England’s batting collapse was averted with the team finishing the first test ahead by an innings and 88 runs.

The second test saw Sri Lanka described by some commentators as ‘scrappy’ and ‘woeful’. England won the match by 9 wickets, with Sri Lanka trailing by 40 runs.

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