Worcs will open with Moeen if England ask

County Cricket

English county Worcestershire say they are prepared to open the batting with all-rounder Moeen Ali if England think they should, in order to see how he will do there in the Test team.

There has been speculation that Moeen might open the batting and replace the out-of-form Adam Lyth, but the Worcs man is not often found at the top of the knock. His form during the Ashes was good though, even batting at eight he was England's third-best batsman.

Worcs director Steve Rhodes said in the Worcester News: "With Moeen playing in the one-dayers, that would take him right up to the brink of the last two games (against Durham and Middlesex).

"There is talk in the media that England may try and open the batting with him in Dubai against Pakistan.

"If that is the case, it seems logical that maybe we can help that out. If England requested him to open the batting, then we can accommodate that."

Moeen himself has expressed an interest in the new role, though feels badly for Lyth, saying in his ECB blog: "I would love to be batting back up the order, because coming in at number eight it was already 80-6 or something like that.

"Before the series I thought to myself that the best thing I could do was be consistent and hopefully push myself up. I feel I've done that and I was last man out in both innings at the Oval.

"I certainly wouldn't mind opening, in Tests as well as white-ball cricket, even though I've never done it in first-class cricket. I have in the second team as well as in one-day stuff with Worcestershire and England.

"But I feel a bit bad talking about that because of Adam Lyth. It’s probably the hardest job in cricket, opening the batting, especially in the Ashes."

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