Moeen to benefit from Ajmal input

England

All-rounder Moeen Ali is eager to capitalise on the knowledge and insight imparted by Pakistan spinner Saeed Ajmal, after being named in England's squad for the first Test against Sri Lanka at Lord's later this month.

All-rounder Moeen Ali is eager to capitalise on the knowledge and insight imparted by Pakistan spinner Saeed Ajmal, after being named in England's squad for the first Test against Sri Lanka at Lord's later this month.

Ali, who is one three new caps in the 12-man party, alongside seamer Chris Jordan and batsman Sam Robson, has been playing with Ajmal during Worcestershire's 2014 County Championship campaign.

The left-handed Ali has secured 371 Division Two runs in five innings at an impressive average of 74.20, and taken seven key wickets, while the prolific Ajmal has raced through 29 victims, including an fine haul of 13 for 94 against Essex recently.

"Saeed is always giving me tips. He has done it at the top level and what I'm going through at the moment practicing bowling-wise," said off-spinner Ali.

"He has been through already so that gives me a confidence boost. Saeed also helped me a lot the first time he was here in 2011 with my bowling and as a cricketer."

England's squad for next week's series opener excluded six players from the heavy defeat endured in the fifth and final Test against Australia at the Sydney Cricket Ground earlier this year.

All-rounder Ben Stokes, wicketkeeper-batsman Jonny Bairstow, leg-spinner Scott Borthwick, fast bowler Boyd Rankin, the exiled Kevin Pietersen and opener Michael Carberry have been omitted.

"I thought the previous winter that the chance might have passed me by to play for England but I put my foot down and really worked hard on my game and to score mountains of runs," added Ali.

"This winter's experience has given me the hunger to want to play more international cricket and obviously the next step is Test cricket. I've been concentrating on playing for Worcestershire, who I love playing for, but to now be selected for the Test squad is fantastic news."

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