England All-rounder Moeen Ali Takes Indefinite Break From Test Cricket
On a day when he lost his red-ball contract with England Cricket Board (ECB), Moeen Ali has taken an indefinite break from Test cricket. He has not announced his retirement but also hasn’t set a comeback date, which could mean that he will be out of red-ball cricket for long.
With this, he has joined long list of cricketers who have left playing red-ball cricket to concentrate on their white-ball game. The list starts with Adil Rashid, who was recalled to the Test side for India series last year despite him retiring from the format.
Later, Alex Halex and Reece Topley also signed just white-ball contracts with their counties. Although Topley’s back issue does not allow him to play red-ball cricket.
New Zealand’s opener Colin Munro and South Africa batsman David Miller had also quit red-ball in 2019. India’s Ambati Rayudu had also retired from the first-class format last year but he is set to make a comeback in Ranji Trophy for this season, after coming out of retirement.
Right from his debut in 2014, Moeen continued to be a regular part of the playing XI for next four years and for the first time in his career, he was dropped during Test series in New Zealand.
He made a remarkable comeback to Tests with a nine-fer against India in Southampton. In Sri Lanka, he scalped 18 wickets in three Tests.
After he took just three wickets for 172 runs in opening Ashes Test in Birmingham, he was dropped from the Test squad and stayed out of the side for rest of the series.
In his absence, Jack Leach has done a good job with the red ball and has sealed his place in the squad at least for the New Zealand tour.
As Moeen Ali announced, he has not retired and will make a comeback to red-ball cricket.
In 60 Test matches, the all-rounder has scored 2782 runs and has 181 wickets in his account. He will in action for Worcestershire in the semi-final of T20 Blast tomorrow. The final of the tournament will be played on Saturday.
Meanwhile, England name their squad for New Zealand tour on Monday. Amar Virdi is expected to be named as the second spinner in England’s Test squad.
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