Navigation links are available on the page. The return of Moeen Ali to the England cricket team is considered as the best option. The article was last updated 55 minutes ago and is under the Cricket section.
Life can be unpredictable and change quickly.
Just recently, LIV was not well-liked in the golfing world, Karim Benzema belonged to the Real Madrid team, and Moeen Ali had previously played in Test cricket.
Currently, LIV has reached the highest level in golf, Benzema is considered a valuable addition to the sports industry of Saudi Arabia, and Moeen has returned.
Moeen, an off-spinner, has made a decision to respond to England’s Ashes SOS, adding an exciting element to the already thrilling journey of Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum.
The announcement on Sunday that Jack Leach will not be participating in the series against Australia due to a back injury was a significant setback both for him individually and for the team as a whole.
Leach, a left-arm bowler, has missed out on the opportunity to play in the Ashes due to past injuries and health concerns. This is a disappointment for him, as he is currently performing well in Test cricket and is a crucial member of the England team.
The departure of a player has caused a significant weakness in England’s offensive strategy, particularly because their captain, Stokes, may not be physically capable of bowling and there are limited alternative options available to compensate for this loss.
In light of the circumstances, England has made a smart decision by giving Moeen the chance to redeem himself against the Australian team. This move has taken him away from his commentary duties for the BBC and thrown him into the chaotic environment of an Ashes competition.
Choosing a player who hasn’t participated in first-class cricket since retiring from Test cricket in September 2021 could lead to England receiving criticism for disregarding other players who have been part of the team or have been actively playing in the County Championship.
However, in reality, all the available choices were unsatisfactory and would have placed the concerned players in a challenging position, possibly even an unjust one.
Rehan Ahmed, a leg-spinner, is a young and talented player who showed great potential in his first match for Pakistan. However, given his age of only 18, it may be challenging for him to bear the burden of being the only spinner in a match against the Australian team.
On his debut in Rawalpindi, Will Jacks managed to take six wickets. He has the potential to become a skilled off-spinning all-rounder like Moeen, but his skills as a bowler are still in the developing stage.
Lancashire’s County Championship team has removed Matt Parkinson from their squad, and Liam Dawson has not participated in Test cricket since 2017. Despite this, left-armer Dawson would have been considered the most dependable option, but Stokes and McCullum have shown a tendency to avoid conventional choices.
England has the option of selecting four primary seam bowlers, along with the off-spin of Joe Root and whatever overs Ben Stokes is able to deliver. This remains a viable option for the team.
It is important to note that Stokes often chooses to field first when he wins the toss at home. This has happened four times since he became captain last year. On the other hand, Australia usually prefers to bat first when they win the toss. In fact, they have done so 17 times out of their last 20 matches. This means that England may not need to rely on a spinner in the fourth innings of a match.
Despite the theory being discredited, it is evident that Leach has played a significant part in England’s success of winning 11 out of 13 Tests. He has been the only bowler to participate in every match and has delivered over 1,000 more deliveries than any other player.
Since 2001, England has not won any Ashes Test matches without having a main spinner in their team.
Suppose there is a strong requirement for a skilled spinner, Moeen has the advantage of having played in 64 Test matches and taking 195 wickets. Only Derek Underwood and Graeme Swann have taken more wickets for England as spin bowlers. One could argue that Moeen would still be the preferred choice for England if he had not retired before the last Ashes series.
Moeen, who has won the World Cup in both limited-overs formats, is unlikely to be intimidated by the grandeur of the event. He recently emerged victorious in the Indian Premier League for Chennai Super Kings, playing in front of over 100,000 spectators at the final held in Ahmedabad.
With five Test hundreds under his belt, this player’s versatility allows England to consider adding another seam bowler to the team in case Stokes is unable to bowl.
If Moeen is positioned at number eight, he would provide stability to the lower order of the team which usually has Stuart Broad at a higher position than necessary.
The combination of Root, Harry Brook, Stokes, and Jonny Bairstow in the engine room, with Moeen following, is an exciting prospect. England has been playing with a free-flowing and attacking style under Stokes, which suits both the batting and bowling skills of Moeen. In the past, Moeen may not have performed at his best under more structured regimes.
Moeen has shown interest in coming back to cricket before. In the previous summer, he reversed his retirement decision but later declined an offer to join the Pakistan tour. It is apparent that recalling a player who hasn’t played with a red ball for almost two years carries some level of risk.
It is likely that Australia would have targeted Leach and may do the same to Moeen. In the past, they were able to eliminate Moeen from the series after just one Test match.
Moeen’s performance in bowling has not been very good against Australia as compared to other teams. His bowling average is 64.65 and strike-rate is 100.5 against Australia, which is the worst among all opponents. Steve Smith has particularly been successful against Moeen, scoring an average of almost 114 runs against him. Furthermore, in the year 2021, which happens to be Moeen’s last year of Test career, his bowling average of 37.50 and strike-rate of 63 were his worst since 2016.
Towards the end of his Test career, the ability of the left-handed player to bat had decreased. In the period of 2018 onwards, he had played in 16 Tests and had an average of only 16 runs, which is less than half of what he had achieved in the 48 matches he played before that time.
Stokes and McCullum, who are leading England, are not thinking about potential negative outcomes regarding Moeen. Instead, they are optimistic and anticipate a positive influence from him. This positive outlook has been advantageous for their team up until now.
It’s possible that if things go smoothly, Moeen may be convinced to stay longer than just this summer. This is especially true given that there will be five Tests taking place in India in the beginning of next year.
If this is the end of Moeen’s Test career, it could be a spectacular finale, like a final dance performed under the brightest lights.
Moeen’s comeback has further intensified the excitement surrounding the upcoming Ashes series, regardless of the eventual result. This highly anticipated battle between the two teams is set to be one of the most thrilling
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