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News

Anderson replaces Wood for Adelaide Test; Leach retained in squad

England's batting line-up, which managed 147 and 297 at the Gabba, will remain unchanged

Andrew McGlashan
Andrew McGlashan
15-Dec-2021
Mark Wood pushed the speed gun above 150kph/93mph, Australia vs England, The Ashes, 1st Test, 2nd day, Brisbane, December 9, 2021

Mark Wood pushed the speed gun above 150kph/93mph in Brisbane, but will play no part in Adelaide  •  AFP/Getty Images

Having planned for years to always have a point-of-difference pace option in their Ashes teams, England have left out Mark Wood, their fastest bowler, from their 12-player squad for the day-night Test in Adelaide.
England said that Wood, who topped 150kph in Brisbane, had been rested with James Anderson, who was not in final consideration for the first Test, taking his place. Left-arm spinner Jack Leach has been retained despite the punishment dished out to him last week with the final decision again seemingly between him and Stuart Broad.
Wood bowled with pace and hostility in Brisbane, claiming Steven Smith caught behind on the second day to spark a period where England briefly brought themselves back into the contest before Travis Head ripped the game away from them.
Wood was the only one of the three express quicks England had earmarked for this tour with Jofra Archer and Olly Stone injured.
Anderson's recall for this match had been expected with the hope that he can exploit the pink-ball and have the opportunity to bowl when conditions are favourable under lights. Four years ago, he took his only five-wicket haul in Australia when he and Chris Woakes bowled Australia for 138 in the second innings although the game still ended in a heavy defeat for England.
"I had success with it [the pink ball] last time here, but it is quite temperamental still," Anderson said. "It's not a given it will swing round corners. We know it's generally a good pitch here, if the sun's out it won't do a great deal but there might be times during the game - twilight or when it's dark - that it might do a little bit more. Take advantage of those times when it does do a bit."
England's batting line-up, which managed 147 and 297 at the Gabba, will remain unchanged.
Keeping Leach in the 12 is a show of faith after he was treated harshly in Brisbane to concede 102 from 13 overs. They were cautioned against going into the day-night Test without a spinner by Adelaide Oval groundsman Damian Hough while Nathan Lyon has taken 19 wickets at 25.78 in the fixture.
"History says that the pitch will spin," Hough said on Wednesday. "Nathan has always played a role out there so from our end we believe that spin in Adelaide needs to play a part. We feel that it has previously and it still should."

Andrew McGlashan is a deputy editor at ESPNcricinfo