Chris Woakes Won't Be Available For 4th Test As He Heads Home
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Chris Woakes Won’t Be Available For 4th Test As He Heads Home

England’s Chris Woakes walks off after his match-winning innings against Pakistan in the first Test at Old Trafford. Photograph: Tom Jenkins/The Guardian
England’s Chris Woakes walks off after his match-winning innings against Pakistan in the first Test at Old Trafford. Photograph: Tom Jenkins/The Guardian

Chris Woakes, England’s all-rounder will not be available for selection in the playing XI for the fourth and final Test between England and India as he has left the tour for his pre-planned break.

Chris Woakes left England’s bio-secure bubble to fly back home. The 31-year-old cricketer was named in England squad for South Africa, Sri Lanka, and India series but wasn’t picked in the playing XI in any of the tours.

Chris Woakes of England (REUTERS)
Chris Woakes of England (REUTERS)

Chris Woakes Returns Home To Be With His Family

Jos Buttler played the first Test and then flew home while all-rounder Moeen Ali also flew home after playing the second Test. Earlier batsman Jonny Bairstow was rested for the first two Tests while premier pacer James Anderson missed the second game even after England emerged victorious in the opening game.

The decision to rest players was due to England and Wales Cricket Board’s (ECB) rotation policy. The all-rounder Chris Woakes is to return for the ODI series in March as he wasn’t named in the T20I squad and has played the last of his 8 T20Is back in 2015.

He travelled to South Africa for England’s white-ball tour in December but having sat out the T20I leg, but the ODI series was then cancelled due to concerns over the implementation of Covid protocols in the team hotel.

Sam Curran and Moeen Ali. @ Twitter/England Cricket
Sam Curran and Moeen Ali. @ Twitter/England Cricket

Chris Woakes’ chances of featuring in the Sri Lanka leg of England’s Test tour were delayed from the outset, after his Birmingham-based travel companion Moeen Ali was diagnosed with Covid-19 on arrival in the country in January, meaning that the duo was required to undergo an extended period of quarantine.

Chris Woakes has returned home to be with his wife and two young daughters. In the third Test, India defeated England within two days to seal the pink-ball Test comprehensively. The match saw both India and England batsmen failing to shine and getting out to balls that didn’t turn and skidded through from their spinners.

Jos Buttler, Sam Curran, and Moeen Ali are also unavailable for the remainder of the Test series but will return to the squad next week to prepare for the five-match T20I series that starts on March 12. Chris Woakes has featured in 38 Tests, 103 ODIs, and 8 T20Is.

Sam Curran, who was rested for the first two matches, was due to fly to Ahmedabad in time for the fourth Test, which begins on March 4, but will instead arrive with the limited-overs squad. The 22-year-old Surrey cricketer was scheduled to travel to India to play the last 2 Tests but England and Wales Cricket Board decided to rest him to avert bubble fatigue.

Chris Silverwood: India Played Better Than England As They Pushed England To The Extremes Which England’s Players Haven’t Experienced Before

England head coach Chris Silverwood on Friday said that his side expected the pitch in the third Test against India to hold on a little longer than it did at the Narendra Modi Stadium.
“First and foremost, it’s just a follow-up from what Joe Root said yesterday, he got 5/8 yesterday but at the same time, whatever the pitch did or it didn’t do, India ultimately played better than us on that surface, probably they pushed us to the extremes which our players haven’t experienced before,” said Silverwood in a virtual press conference on Friday.
Chris Silverwood, England head coach
Chris Silverwood, England head coach Getty Image.
Meanwhile, England, who are now 2-1 down in the four-match Test series, is out of contention for a place in the final of the ICC World Test Championship against the Kiwis. England has dropped to 64.1 percentage points on the points table, which is now led by India with 71 percentage points.
New Zealand is assured of a place in the final with 70 percentage points. India needs to either win or draw the last Test to stay ahead of Australia, which is in third place with 69.2 percentage points. Australia will go through if the last match is won by England.