England v Pakistan: Dom Bess says he is ready for Test debut at Lord's

England's Dom Bess
Dom Bess made 92 for Somerset in his most recent first-class match
England v Pakistan, first Test
Date: 24-28 May Time: 11:00 BST Venue: Lord's
Coverage: Ball-by-ball Test Match Special commentary on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra, Radio 4 LW and the BBC Sport website. Live text commentary on the BBC Sport website and app. Full tour details

England off-spinner Dom Bess says he intends to play without pressure if he makes his Test debut against Pakistan on Thursday.

The 20-year-old will play his first game at Lord's if England select a spinner for the opening match of the two-Test series.

"I see it as a great opportunity," said Somerset's Bess, who has played only 16 first-class matches.

"If I put pressure on myself, then there is only going to be a spiral."

Bess, who describes himself as an "attacking off-spinner" and "very competitive", has taken 63 wickets at an average of 22.49 since making his first-class debut against Pakistan in 2016.

However, he has managed only one wicket in two County Championship games this season.

Asked at a news conference if he was ready to play Test cricket, he said: "Of course I do.

"There's a lot of chat about me only playing 16 first-class matches, but I always believe that everything happens for a reason."

'I want it more and more'

Slow left-armer Jack Leach, Bess' Somerset team-mate who made his debut in England's most recent Test in New Zealand in March, broke a thumb in the final round of championship games before the squad was named.

"I am gutted for him," said Bess. "I saw him the other day. He said, 'You're here for a reason, and you've just got to adapt now to the level up'.

"He absolutely loved (his debut) and I saw when he came back, when you get a taste of it, you want it even more.

"I really got that vibe off Jack - and as soon as I've been here now, I want it more and more. That's a very good trait to have."

Bess was 12th man for Somerset's championship game against Middlesex at Lord's last year, the first time he had been to the ground as a spectator or player.

"I'm a massive rugby fan - I love rugby," he said. "My family, dad, two uncles are big rugby fans, so I always used to go to Twickenham.

"I never got the chance to come here. It will be a very special day if I get my chance to play.

"I've never been to the home dressing room, so to have a look at the (honours) board was very special. I hope one day I can get my name up there."

'Bess gets stuck in - I like that selection'

Former England captain Michael Vaughan on BBC Radio 5 live

Everything I hear about him is character. He's meant to be a real, solid kid who loves the game and gets stuck in. I like that selection.

Everything he's been thrown into, he takes hold of. I'm really looking forward to seeing him. It won't be easy for him, but he can bat and he's supposed to be a good fielder.

England have to find a frontline spinner. Overseas, that's been an issue, so I like that selection a lot.

What Bess has got in Pakistan is a couple of left-armers that can develop the rough outside off stump, and he'll fancy a bit of that.

What about the rest of the team?

England's Ben Stokes
Ben Stokes played 13 games for Rajasthan Royals in this season's Indian Premier League

If Bess plays, England are likely to have to choose between Chris Woakes and Mark Wood for the final seamer's spot, alongside James Anderson, Stuart Broad and Ben Stokes.

Jos Buttler will bat at seven for England in his first Test since 2016, while captain Joe Root and Dawid Malan will move up a place to three and four respectively.

Wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow has been promoted to five, with all-rounder Stokes at six despite not having played a first-class match this season.

Pakistan pace bowler Mohammad Amir is set to play following concerns over a knee injury.

The left-armer, 26, appeared to be bowling at full pace in the nets on Tuesday.

Pakistan won one and drew two of their three tour matches against county opposition, before claiming a five-wicket win in Ireland's inaugural Test last week.

England squad: Alastair Cook, Mark Stoneman, Dawid Malan, Joe Root (capt), Jonny Bairstow (wk), Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood, Stuart Broad, James Anderson, Dom Bess.

Pakistan squad: Sarfraz Ahmed (capt, wk), Asad Shafiq, Azhar Ali, Babar Azam, Faheem Ashraf, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Sohail, Hasan Ali, Imam-ul-Haq, Mohammad Abbas, Mohammad Amir, Rahat Ali, Saad Ali, Sami Aslam, Shadab Khan, Usman Salahuddin.

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