England recall Woakes to T20 squad for first time since 2015

England have a 12-match white-ball programme, with three games in each format against Sri Lanka and the same against Pakistan. England coach Chris Silverwood will take a break during the ODIs, leaving Graham Thorpe and Paul Collingwood in charge.

For the first three T20s, Silverwood is without Jofra Archer (elbow), Ben Stokes (finger) and Reece Topley (side). Stokes is nearing a comeback with Durham.

Silverwood has opted for experience in his 16-man squad, with Woakes, Willey and Dawson all winning recalls for two matches in Cardiff and one in Southampton.

Woakes last played T20 for England in late 2015, but has been a regular in Test and ODI cricket in that time, and was a key member of the World Cup-winning side. Woakes has remained a player in demand in the Indian Premier League, and was playing for Delhi Capitals in the recently-aborted season.

Willey has not been in England’s plans since last summer, while Dawson has not played since 2018, although he has been in squads – including for the World Cup – more recently, despite injury issues.

England T20 squad

To face Sri Lanka

Eoin Morgan (Middlesex, captain), Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), Jonny Bairstow (Yorkshire), Sam Billings (Kent), Jos Buttler (Lancashire), Sam Curran (Surrey), Tom Curran (Surrey), Liam Dawson (Hampshire), Chris Jordan (Sussex), Liam Livingstone (Lancashire), Dawid Malan (Yorkshire), Adil Rashid (Yorkshire), Jason Roy (Surrey), David Willey (Yorkshire), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire), Mark Wood (Durham)

They have made the cut ahead of Lancashire’s Matt Parkinson and Saqib Mahmood, who will play in the Vitality Blast instead.

“With the T20 World Cup only a few months away, this summer is about perfecting our team and continue to progress on the field,” said Silverwood. “We want to approach every series with an influx of players aiming to win every match and giving us the best preparation as we get closer to the tournament.

“With several high-profile players missing through injury, it allows me to look at some of our experienced players who have not featured at this level for some time. The likes of Chris Woakes and David Willey are very experienced cricketers, and to have them both in the mix is exciting and shows the depth of squad we have available.

“I want our team to play an attacking form of the game. I hope we can continue to excite the England fans with our approach.”

Meanwhile, England released Dom Bess from their Test squad to face New Zealand. With Jack Leach not playing, he was no longer required as a concussion or Covid-19 and has been sent back to his county, Yorkshire.

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