Destructive Opener Jason Roy took one step closer to playing in this summer’s Ashes with the news that he will make his Test debut at Lord’s versus Ireland next week.
Doubts have been cast over whether Roy’s technique can stand up to the rigours of Test cricket, but England have had a long-standing issue opening the batting in the longer format – an issue that has been exacerbated since the retirement of Sir Alastair Cook.
Many believe Roy should be given the chance to prove himself at Test level, with fellow bowler’s nightmare Jos Buttler a shining example of how the transition from white ball to red can be made successfully.
Despite a squad of 13 being announced for the four-day Test – due to begin on July 24, chairman of selectors Ed Smith announced that Roy would be in line for a starting berth.
Smith then went on to give his full backing to Roy, telling Sky Sports: “We have total confidence he will be able to adapt to red ball cricket.”
“The reality is at the time [Saturday] he didn’t have a concussion.”
Mixing politics with sport rarely ends well.
James Anderson will play for Lancs second XI as his rehabilitation steps up.
Smith underwent a “precautionary scan” of his neck that thankfully had not revealed any structural damage.
“I think it was important that we bounced back strongly after Edgbaston and I think we’ve certainly done that.”
Jofra Archer has changed the mood if not the scoreline.
Steve Smith out, Marnus Labuschagne in.
Woakes enjoyed Archer v Smith just as much as the rest of us.
The marquee might read England v Australia, but we all know it’s Steve Smith v Jofra Archer
Thankfully, Smith appears to have suffered no lasting damage.