May 29, 2003

England squad for The NatWest Challenge and The NatWest Series


England today named a 15 man squad for the forthcoming NatWest Challenge against Pakistan and the NatWest Series against South Africa and Zimbabwe.

The squad contains six players yet to make their One-Day International debut; Kabir Ali, Rikki Clarke, Robert Key, Richard Johnson, Anthony McGrath and James Troughton. There are also recalls to the One-Day squad for Yorkshire's Darren Gough, Nottinghamshire's Chris Read and the Worcestershire batsman Vikram Solanki.

Announcing the squad, Chairman of Selectors, David Graveney, said: "The bulk of this squad is under thirty years of age and has been chosen with the next World Cup firmly in mind. We are anticipating two tough series this summer, but we believe that now is the right time for us to look at younger players and give them an opportunity to develop on the international stage.

"We did consider a number of more senior players and we have not drawn a line against any particular individuals. But it is our clear intention now to develop a strong nucleus of players who, we believe, will be approaching their peak come the West Indies in 2007.

"Darren Gough's inclusion is clearly an exception to this rule. But he is a proven match-winner who was badly missed during the World Cup and his inclusion will add experience to our bowling attack. As well as providing a strike bowling capacity, we also believe Darren can play an important role in passing on advice to the younger bowlers within the squad.

"Chris Read has a broken right thumb and he has been included in the squad subject to fitness. The medical advice we have received is that this is an undisplaced fracture and it will take him around three weeks to recover. James Foster will be on stand-by to replace him.

"Chris received an excellent report from the Academy during the winter. His game has clearly progressed with both bat and gloves and we believe that he can now fulfill the potential he showed at international level earlier in his career. "

England Squad for The NatWest Challenge and NatWest Series

Players                                D.O.B
Michael Vaughan (Yorkshire) (Captain) 29.10.74
Kabir Ali (Worcestershire)            24.11.80
James Anderson (Lancashire)           30.7.82
Rikki Clarke (Surrey)                 29.9.81
Andrew Flintoff (Lancashire)           6.12.77
Ashley Giles (Warwickshire)           19.3.73
Darren Gough (Yorkshire)              18.9.70
Stephen Harmison (Durham)             23.10.78
Richard Johnson (Somerset)            29.12.74
Robert Key (Kent)                     12.5.79
Anthony McGrath (Yorkshire)            6.10.75
Chris Read (Nottinghamshire)          10.8.78
Vikram Solanki (Worcestershire)        1.4.76
Marcus Trescothick (Somerset)         25.12.75
James Troughton (Warwickshire)         2.3.79

The NatWest Challenge

Tues June 17 England v Pakistan Old Trafford Fri 20 June England v Pakistan AMP Oval Sun 22 June England v Pakistan Lord's

The NatWest Series Thurs 26 June England v Zimbabwe Trent Bridge Sat 28 June England v South Africa AMP Oval Sun 29 June Zimbabwe v South Africa Canterbury Tue 1 July England v Zimbabwe Headingley Thu 3 July England v South Africa Old Trafford(D/N) Sat 5 July Zimbabwe v South Africa Cardiff Sun 6 July England v Zimbabwe Bristol Tue 8 July England v South Africa Edgbaston(D/N) Thu 10 July Zimbabwe v South Africa Rose Bowl Sat 12 July Final Lord's (13 July reserve day)