After being completely outplayed by India in the four-match Test series played earlier this year, England will be looking to start their home season on a positive note. The home side has included uncapped wicket-keeper James Bracey and pacer Ollie Robinson for the upcoming two-match Test series.
All-rounder Ben Stokes will not be available for the two-match Test series against New Zealand after suffering from fractured finger during the Indian Premier League played this year. Pacer Jofra Archer showed signs of discomfort for his county side in the English County Championship. The selectors have decided not to risk Jofra Archer for the two-match Test series against New Zealand.
Craig Overton makes his comeback to the side after almost two years. The medium-pacer has been named in England Test squad for the home series against New Zealand.
On the other hand, New Zealand will be looking to adjust to the conditions and put on a decent show in this opening encounter. Kane Williamson will lead the side for the two-match Test series, while BJ Watling will be first-choice keeper for the kiwis.
This series against England will help New Zealand prepare well for the inaugural World Test Championship final against India at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton. Before the start of the Test series, we will look in detail the three batsmen to watch out for England.
First up in the list is England’s premier batsman in the five-day format- Joe Root. After a tough series against India in the subcontinent, Joe Root will be hoping that England can turn things around in this home series.
With the majority of the batting lineup looking clueless against Indian spinners, England captain Joe Root was the only who showed competency in tough subcontinent conditions. In the Anthony de Mello Trophy against India, Root topped the batting charts for England in the series and accumulated 368 runs at an average of 46.00 with one double-century to his name.
Since November 2019, Joe Root is leading the batting charts for England in Test cricket. The 30-year old has shown excellent form for the side and accumulated 1,574 runs in 17 matches at an average of 56.21 with four centuries and four half-centuries to his name.
The team management will be hoping that Joe Root can continue his excellent form with the bat in this home series.
The next in the list is promising middle-order batsman, Zak Crawley, who will be looking to get back amongst the runs. Since making his debut, Crawley has been a consistent performer for England in the five-day format.
The 23-year old has represented his country in 12 Tests, where he has scored 683 runs at an average of 34.15 with the help of one century and four half-centuries
After struggling to score runs in subcontinent conditions, Crawley will be keen to find form with the bat in this two-match Test series..
In the Test matches played at home, Zak Crawley has produced excellent numbers with the bat. In 42 Tests, He has accumulated 417 runs at an average of 69.50 with one century and two half-centuries to his name.
Opener Dominic Sibley has been a decent performer for England in Test arena. The 25-year old clearly struggled in slow and low conditions in India. The right-handed could only accumulate 134 runs in eight innings at an average of 16.75.
Despite his struggles on subcontinent conditions, Dominic Sibley has shown the ability to produce crucial runs in tough situations.
Dominic Sibley will take heart from the fact that he has decent record in the Test matches played at home. In six Tests played in England, Dominic Sibley has scored 324 runs at an average of 36.00, which includes one century and two half-centuries to his name.