England v Sri Lanka: Uncapped James Vince & Jake Ball called up

James Vince
James Vince was part of the England squad that reached the final of the World Twenty20
England v Sri Lanka, first Investec Test
Venue: Headingley Dates: 19-23 May
Coverage: Ball-by-ball Test Match Special commentary on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra, Radio 4 LW, online, tablets, mobiles and BBC Sport app. Live text commentary on the BBC Sport website.

Uncapped duo James Vince and Jake Ball have been named in England's 12-man squad for the first Test against Sri Lanka at Headingley next week.

Vince, 25, looks set to play in the game, which starts on 19 May, while Ball, also 25, will have to vie for the third seamer's role in Leeds.

Alex Hales remains as captain Alastair Cook's opening partner, while pace bowler Steven Finn is fit again.

Nick Compton has kept his spot as England's likely number three.

Lions captain Vince has five limited-overs caps and was part of the England squad that reached the final of the ICC World Twenty20 in India last month.

He comes into the team in place of the retired James Taylor.

"It's something I've been aiming for since I was a little kid really," said Hampshire captain Vince. "Definitely when I was growing up, playing for England in a Test was still the number one."

Vince gets the nod at number five ahead of the likes of Ian Bell and Gary Ballance, who were both dropped last year.

"Gary Ballance is still a fine player," said England vice-captain and Ballance's Yorkshire team-mate Joe Root. "I'm sure when he gets the opportunity to play for Yorkshire next week he'll be desperate to prove he's still a Test batsman."

Root, speaking to BBC Sport, added: "James has had a fantastic start to the season, he has been involved in the England set-up all winter and proven that he's got the right temperament and mindset to be successful on the international stage."

Ball has stated his case with 19 wickets already for Nottinghamshire this season and also spent time with the Lions in the United Arab Emirates.

The right-armer will compete with Steven Finn for a place in the final XI.

"I've never met the coach Trevor Bayliss and I don't know if he's seen me bowl in person," Ball told BBC Radio 5 live. "I'll have to try to impress him and Alastair Cook in the nets and hopefully that we lead to a spot in the team.

"I'm not putting pressure on myself. I'll just enjoy every minute of it because it's a once in a lifetime experience and keep doing what I've been doing for Notts."

There are three Tests in the series, with the second set for 27 May at Chester-le-Street and the third from 3 June at Lord's.

Squad: Alastair Cook (captain), Moeen Ali, James Anderson, Jonny Bairstow, Jake Ball, Stuart Broad, Nick Compton, Steven Finn, Alex Hales, Joe Root, Ben Stokes, James Vince.


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