Stoneman gets England call as Jennings dropped

Surrey batsman Mark Stoneman

Surrey batsman Stoneman was included in a 13-man squad announced on Thursday from which the struggling Keaton Jennings was dropped.

Surrey batsman Stoneman is set to make his debut at Edgbaston and the 30-year-old will become former captain Alastair Cook's 12th opening partner since the retirement of Andrew Strauss in 2012.

By the time England wrapped up a 3-1 series victory over South Africa in Joe Root's opening campaign as Test captain, there were few defenders of Jennings remaining.

Mark Stoneman insists he will not be thinking about the Ashes series at the end of the year after he was called up into England's squad for the first Test against the West Indies, starting on 17 August. "The selectors would like to offer their congratulations to Mark Stoneman and Mason Crane who thoroughly deserve their opportunity in the squad".

Tom Westley, number 679, retains his place in the squad while Chris Woakes returns to the squad and could displace the unfortunate Toby Roland-Jones, who has impressed in his brief opportunity as an global seamer.

Sheer weight of runs appears to have seen Stoneman force his way in ahead of Haseeb Hameed, who made his Test debut in India a year ago but has managed just one first-class score of more than fifty so far this season.


"He was impressive in his return game at Lord's this week and if selected in the final line-up, he will be relishing the prospect of playing on his home ground", Whitaker said of Woakes.

Crane has always been considered the best young spinner in the country and England are determined to include him in at least one of the Tests against West Indies with a view to taking him to Australia for the Ashes.

"He hasn't had the best of series".

But it is the inclusion of 20-year-old Crane for this country's first day-night Test that has caused most surprise.

Woakes has fully recovered from a side strain sustained during the Champions Trophy in June and has missed most of the season.

England squad: Joe Root (c), Moeen Ali, James Anderson, Jonny Bairstow, Stuart Broad, Alastair Cook, Mason Crane, Dawid Malan, Toby Roland-Jones, Ben Stokes, Mark Stoneman, Tom Westley, Chris Woakes.

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