England in West Indies 2015 April 4, 2015

Cook, Moores yet to discuss openers slot

Jonathan Trott showed he had lost none of his class when returning for Warwickshire last summer © Getty Images

Jonathan Trott is tipped to be the latest opening partner for Alastair Cook when England begin their Test series against West Indies on April 13 but Cook, who has not found a regular ally since Andrew Strauss retired, said the choice between Trott and Adam Lyth, the leading run-scorer in Division One of the County Championship last season, is yet to be discussed.

Trott is back on tour for the first time since leaving the Ashes tour of 2013-14 after the first Test with a stress-related illness but since returning for Warwickshire has proved his form once again with five centuries in Championship and 50-over cricket.

Cook reported Trott to be in good spirits as the tour party arrived in St Kitts ahead of the opening tour match on Easter Monday. But with Gary Ballance having made the No. 3 slot his own with three Test centuries last summer, Trott will be required to move up to open the batting to regain his place in the side.

England also have the option of handing 27-year-old Lyth a Test debut. He made 1489 Championship runs at 67.68 last season, leading Yorkshire to the title, and Cook is enthused by the competition for the opener's slot.

"We're lucky in one sense that we're choosing between two very good players," Cook said. "Ever since Straussy announced his retirement we haven't quite found consistency in that position so whoever gets that chance gets the opportunity to try and nail that down. But we haven't discussed that yet.

"Trott has almost demanded selection and it's great for me to see him back in an England shirt. He's a great guy and if he gets his chance he'll be desperate to do well. It would be his 50th game as well which is a great achievement if he gets there.

"You don't know 100% if he'll be fine until he's put out in the environment but Trotty's done everything we've asked of him. He feels confident in himself and he's just looking forward to taking that next step. What we do know is he's a quality player. You don't have his stats and that weight of runs behind you without being a quality player.

"When I saw him in Brisbane I would have been surprised if he'd come back but it's a huge credit to the work he's done off the field and the effort he's put in. That obviously shows his desire to come back to play for England."

The decision between Trott and Lyth is not the only area where England have competition for places. Another member of Yorkshire's Championship-winning side, Adil Rashid, is on tour five years after he last played for England - reigniting England's dream of finding a legspinning-allrounder after a failed experience with Scott Borthwick. Mark Wood, the Durham fast bowler, is another who could make a Test debut in Antigua.

"There's good competition for places," Cook said. "The guys are desperate to put on a show to try and get their name in that XI. There's some new faces and different characters and it will be great to see how they go in an England shirt.

"Time is tight, we've got four days of cricket, but these things tend to work themselves out. We want to give people a chance but that doesn't always happen. It's down to each individual to get themselves ready as best as they can. You never know where your chance may come.

"There's a lot of things about selection that are unknown until you're put into the pressure cooker of international cricket and make no mistake, it's a high-intensity environment - there's no doubt about that."

Alex Winter is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo He tweets here

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