London [UK], January 21 (ANI): Ben Stokes and Jofra Archer have been named in England's squad for the first two Tests against India, England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced on Thursday.
Stokes and Archer are currently not a part of England's squad for the ongoing two-match Test series against Sri Lanka, but the duo will return to action after a much-deserved break. Rory Burns has also returned to the squad for Tests against India.
Under the leadership of Joe Root, England will be looking to show a spirited performance to bolster their chances of making it to the finals of the World Test Championship in June.
England' squad: Joe Root (Yorkshire) (captain), Jofra Archer (Sussex), Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), James Anderson (Lancashire), Dom Bess (Yorkshire), Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire), Rory Burns (Surrey), Jos Buttler (Lancashire), Zak Crawley (Kent), Ben Foakes (Surrey), Dan Lawrence (Essex), Jack Leach (Somerset), Dom Sibley (Warwickshire), Ben Stokes (Durham), Olly Stone (Warwickshire), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire).
Reserves: James Bracey (Gloucestershire), Mason Crane (Hampshire), Saqib Mahmood (Lancashire), Matthew Parkinson (Lancashire), Ollie Robinson (Sussex), Amar Virdi (Surrey).
Surrey's Ollie Pope will travel to India and will be added to the squad when passed fit. Pope is recovering from a shoulder injury sustained in September during the Test series against Pakistan.
The national selectors have provided a block of rest for Jonathan Bairstow, Sam Curran, and Mark Wood. The three players, who are currently in Sri Lanka, will miss the first and second Tests in India.
This is consistent with the selection policy of finding a block of rest for all multi-format players at some point during the post-Christmas winter schedule.
With Archer and Stokes returning, and subject to the fitness of the rest of the squad, Somerset's Craig Overton will return home after the Sri Lanka series.
India and England are set to lock horns in four Tests, five T20Is, and three ODIs. The first Test is set to begin on February 5 in Chennai.
On Tuesday, India had also announced its squad for the first two Tests against England.
India's squad for first two Tests against England: Virat Kohli (c), Ajinkya Rahane, Rohit Sharma, Shubman Gill, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Wriddhiman Saha, Hardik Pandya, KL Rahul (subject to fitness), Rishabh Pant, Jasprit Bumrah, Ishant Sharma, Mohammad Siraj, Shardul Thakur, Ravi Ashwin, Kuldeep Yadav, Washington Sundar, Axar Patel.
The team has five stand-bys in Priyank Panchal, KS Bharat, Abhimanyu Easwaran, Shahbaz Nadeem, and Rahul Chahar. Net bowlers have also been included with an eye on the coronavirus situation and they are Ankit Rajpoot, Avesh Khan, Sandeep Warrier, K Gowtham, and Saurabh Kumar.
The first two games of the 4-game series are to be played in Chennai before the cricketers move to Ahmedabad for the third and fourth Test. (ANI)