England: Mark Wood returns to squad for Champions Trophy and South Africa series

Mark Wood
Pace bowler Mark Wood has taken 12 wickets in 11 one-day appearances for England

England have named Durham fast bowler Mark Wood in their 15-man squad for a one-day series against South Africa and the Champions Trophy that follows.

Wood returns after missing the winter tour of India following ankle surgery, while Liam Plunkett, who has yet to play this season for Yorkshire after injuring his calf, is also included.

The Champions Trophy is being held in England and Wales from 1-18 June.

Northamptonshire's Ben Duckett is in a separate squad to face Ireland in May.

The 23-year-old batsman scored 2,706 runs in all forms of cricket last season and made a one-day double-hundred for the England Lions.

Middlesex fast bowler Steven Finn also makes the 14-man squad that will play two one-day internationals against Ireland on 5 and 7 May.

Wood is joined, among others, by Yorkshire all-rounder David Willey and Nottinghamshire bowler Jake Ball in both squads.

"We have made encouraging progress in white ball cricket and the squads selected reflects consistency and gives options across all disciplines," national selector James Whitaker said.

England all-rounder Ben Stokes, bowler Chris Woakes and wicketkeeper Jos Buttler, who are all playing in the Indian Premier League, will return for the three-match series against South Africa, starting on 24 May, before the Champions Trophy begins.

The hosts open the eight-team tournament on 1 June against Bangladesh and will also face Australia and New Zealand in Group A.

Wood returns to international fold

Champions Trophy: This is England's best ever chance - Chris Woakes

England have never won a 50-over international competition and have won just one global trophy - the World Twenty20 in 2010 - but reached the final of the 2013 Champions Trophy, where they lost to India by five runs at Edgbaston.

Wood, 27, has struggled with injury throughout his international career and was only able to make four one-day appearances for England last year.

He has not played international cricket since September 2016 and made his return to competitive action in March this year.

All-rounder Willey, who made his return from a shoulder injury for Yorkshire in last week's second round of County Championship games, has also not played one-day cricket for England since 2016.

The 27-year-old has scored 1,256 runs in domestic one-day cricket and taken 98 wickets.

"Mark Wood and David Willey add variety and quality to our bowling strengths and David's ability as an attacking batsman is also an important element for us," Whitaker added.

Kent's Sam Billings will keep wicket against Ireland in Buttler's absence.


Jonathan Agnew, BBC cricket correspondent

England have high hopes of winning the Champions Trophy on their home soil and with Mark Wood back in their squad they look to have every base covered. The fast bowler will always be an injury risk but his ability to bowl faster than 90mph gives Eoin Morgan the firepower to change a match.

Steven Finn will be disappointed to miss out but Jake Ball continues to improve and is now probably the more consistent of the two. Interestingly, in Buttler's absence it is Sam Billings who will keep wicket against Ireland, allowing Jonny Bairstow to concentrate on his batting.

Root goes back to school

Joe Root meets pupils from his former school, Dore Primary School, in Sheffield
Joe Root meets pupils from his former school, Dore Primary School, in Sheffield

New Test captain Joe Root attended his old primary school in Sheffield on Tuesday, and he was asked if this is England's best ever crop of limited-overs players.

"The squad's very talented, there are a lot of bases covered but it's about performing under pressure," the 26-year-old told BBC Sport. "The important thing is that we put in the performances against Ireland and South Africa first.

"The Champions Trophy is going to be very exciting. We're playing a block of white-ball cricket and we're got a great opportunity to get things right."

England squad for Champions Trophy and South Africa series

Eoin Morgan (Middlesex), Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), Jonny Bairstow (Yorkshire), Jake Ball (Nottinghamshire), Sam Billings (Kent), Jos Buttler (Lancashire), Alex Hales (Nottinghamshire), Liam Plunkett (Yorkshire), Adil Rashid (Yorkshire), Joe Root (Yorkshire), Jason Roy (Surrey), Ben Stokes (Durham), David Willey (Yorkshire), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire), Mark Wood (Durham)

England squad for Ireland series

Eoin Morgan (Middlesex), Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), Jonny Bairstow (Yorkshire), Jake Ball (Nottinghamshire), Sam Billings (Kent), Ben Duckett (Northamptonshire), Steven Finn (Middlesex), Alex Hales (Nottinghamshire), Liam Plunkett (Yorkshire), Adil Rashid (Yorkshire), Joe Root (Yorkshire), Jason Roy (Surrey), David Willey (Yorkshire), Mark Wood (Durham)


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