Moeen added to England squad ahead of second Test against India

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10 Aug 2021 | 08:30 AM
authorcricket.com staff

Moeen added to England squad ahead of second Test against India

The spin-bowling all-rounder hasn't played a Test at home since August 2019

England have added Moeen Ali to their squad ahead of the second Test against India, which will be played at Lord's from Thursday (August 12). The spin-bowling all-rounder, who is currently leading Birmingham Phoenix in The Hundred, is expected to join the squad on Tuesday.

The hosts are without Ben Stokes and Chris Woakes and played Sam Curran in the first Test. The young all-rounder batted at No. 8 as England went with four seamers and left out spinner Jack Leach. However, England now have the option of playing a spinner without compromising on their batting.

On Monday, England head coach Chris Silverwood spoke about the possibility of including Moeen into the squad: "Moeen is certainly under consideration. He's always been part of our consideration. So that's something that Joe and I are going to chat about at Lord's. We know he is a fine cricketer and we know he is showing fine form in the Hundred at the moment, though I appreciate it's a different format.

"All-rounders such Stokes or Woakes usually give you options all-round. Unfortunately, we've found ourselves squeezed through circumstance recently and we haven't been able to do that. Could Mo play at Lord's? All I'll say is my mind's not closed to anything. If it fits and works for the team then it's something we have to consider."

Moeen has only played one first-class game in the last 23 months but has been in pretty solid form in white-ball cricket. The 34-year-old has scores of 59, 49 and 26 in his last three encounters in The Hundred and also did well for Chennai Super Kings in the first half of IPL 2021. 

He last played a Test in February 2021 against India in Chennai and took eight wickets in the game. On top of that, Moeen also slammed 43 off 18 deliveries in the fourth innings. However, Moeen hasn't played a Test at home since August 2019. 

Apart from taking 189 wickets in 61 Tests at 36.24, Moeen has also scored 2831 runs at an average of 28.88. The all-rounder has done well against India in the past, especially in home conditions. He has played seven Tests against India in England and has picked up 31 wickets at an impressive average of 22.2 and a strike rate of 38.6. Apart from that, Moeen has also scored 243 runs in 10 innings.

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