Overton twins among back-to-training group for England
- Credit: Sam Cooper/Terry Ife
North Devon bowlers Jamie and Craig Overton have been asked to return to training by the England and Wales Cricket Board as England’s men prepare for the prospect of behind-closed-doors cricket.
The ECB has named a bumper 55-man training group, with a host of new and returning faces joining the core squad.
The expanded group will not be brought together in one place, with individual sessions at a host of county venues the only form of training currently approved, and does not represent an official England squad.
Format-specific squads will be named at a later date.
The Barnstaple-born Overton twins are among six Somerset players to feature. Teammates Jack Leach, Dom Bess, Lewis Gregory and Tom Banton are also involved.
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ECB Performance Director Mo Bobat said: “It’s really pleasing to be in a position to have players returning to training and a huge amount of work has been done by many to get us this far.
“The pool of players will give selectors strong options when it comes to selecting squads across formats further down the line, as we move closer to our aim of playing international cricket this summer.”
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“We will need to continue to work closely with our medical team and government to ensure that our return to training and play activities are in line with best-practice guidelines.
“We’re also really grateful for the positive and collaborative response from our county colleagues who are doing a great job at facilitating coaching and support for the players.
“The fact that we can call on our network to support the national effort shows the strength of our system.”
It is hoped that England will be able to begin international fixtures on July 8 in a controlled environment.
The return of domestic cricket is somewhat murkier, with the start of the county season postponed until August 1.
Ideas for its return include regionalised groups for first-class cricket and some consideration being given to having a small number of fans in attendance. Streaming matches for viewers at home is also on the agenda.
The recreational game remains under suspension but the ECB will look to liaise withthe government on an earlier return for junior cricket.
ECB chief executive Tom Harrison, said: “Across the recreational game it has been heart-warming to hear of clubs where players have returned to the nets.
“As children start returning to school in the coming weeks, we look forward to exploring how those guidelines and learnings can be deployed for cricket.
“This can then see the recreational game continue its phased return as soon as we have Government approval.”
The players in the ECB back-to-training group are:
Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), James Anderson (Lancashire), Jofra Archer (Sussex), Jonny Bairstow (Yorkshire), Tom Banton (Somerset), Dom Bess (Somerset), Sam Billings (Kent), James Bracey (Gloucestershire), Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire), Henry Brookes (Warwickshire), Pat Brown (Worcestershire), Rory Burns (Surrey), Jos Buttler (Lancashire), Brydon Carse (Durham), Mason Crane (Hampshire), Zak Crawley (Kent), Sam Curran (Surrey), Tom Curran (Surrey), Liam Dawson (Hampshire), Joe Denly (Kent), Ben Duckett (Nottinghamshire), Laurie Evans (Sussex), Ben Foakes (Surrey), Richard Gleeson (Lancashire), Lewis Gregory (Somerset), Sam Hain (Warwickshire), Tom Helm (Middlesex), Will Jacks (Surrey), Keaton Jennings (Lancashire), Chris Jordan (Sussex), Tom Kohler-Cadmore (Yorkshire), Dan Lawrence (Essex), Jack Leach (Somerset), Liam Livingstone (Lancashire), Saqib Mahmood (Lancashire), Dawid Malan (Yorkshire), Eoin Morgan (Middlesex), Craig Overton (Somerset), Jamie Overton (Somerset), Matt Parkinson (Lancashire), Ollie Pope (Surrey), Adil Rashid (Yorkshire), Ollie Robinson (Sussex), Joe Root (Yorkshire), Jason Roy (Surrey), Phil Salt (Sussex), Dom Sibley (Warwickshire), Ben Stokes (Durham), Olly Stone (Warwickshire), Reece Topley (Surrey), James Vince (Hampshire), Amar Virdi (Surrey), David Willey (Yorkshire), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire), Mark Wood (Durham).