England recall Ben Foakes for SA opener

England recall Ben Foakes for SA opener

Sinchan Saha

Modified Aug 16, 2022 6:02 PM IST

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England  have recalled fit-again wicketkeeper Ben Foakes for the first Test against South Africa on Wednesday, yet Ollie Robinson has been kept waiting after missing out at Lord’s.

Image Source: Sky Sports

An instance of COVID implied Foakes missed last month’s triumph over India, a fourth in four games under the new leadership team of Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum, however he reclaims the gloves from Kent’s Sam Billings.

That is the only change to the beginning XI, with Robinson unfit to break up a pace attack including James Anderson, Stuart Broad and Matthew Potts.

Robinson has not played for his country since the last match of the Ashes in January, with a progression of fitness issues disrupting a brilliant start to his international career.

He made his way back again into the squad after proving his fitness during the England Lions’ success over the Proteas at Canterbury however sits out alongside fellow seamer Craig Overton and Yorkshire’s in-form batter Harry Brook.

Captain Ben Stokes, in the meantime, admitted taking some satisfaction from hearing South Africa partner Dean Elgar wade into the debate about England’s new way to deal with Test cricket.

The England captain has distanced any association with the term ‘Bazball’, coined to mirror the aggressive approach since he and head coach Brendon McCullum took the helm, however was intrigued to take note of Elgar’s obvious critique of those strategies.

Talking last week the Proteas captain said he had “absolutely no interest” in England’s rebooted style, which has delivered four wins out of four up until this point, yet additionally suggested he was sceptical about how fruitful it would be in the long haul.

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Invited to answer his contrary number just before the first Test at Lord’s, Stokes said: 

“The opposition seem to be doing a lot of talking about it at the moment, we don’t really speak about that much. We just concentrate on what we do. We don’t dive into it too much, but I’m happy for Dean and the South Africa team to say they’re not interested and then keep talking about it. We’ve got a style of play, they’ve got a style of play. At the end of the day it’s bat against ball and whoever plays best over a Test match is more than likely to win.”