Rookie Ollie to make his Test debut against India at Lord's

12 August, 2018, 04:57 | Author: Brenda Erickson
  • Ollie Pope has been in tremendous form scoring 684 runs in Division One of the County Championship at 85.50

Pope will use the example set by county team mate Sam Curran who shone in last week's first match of the series, his second test appearance, with a five-wicket haul in India's first innings and a crucial half century in England's second.

Pope's promotion is one of two changes, with the other enforced as Chris Woakes returns in place of Ben Stokes.

"Dawid Malan drops out of the squad for Lord's", said Smith.

The 20-year-old showed no signs of nervousness when asked about replacing Malan in the team who bats at number four.

England were without Ben Stokes because of his ongoing trial on a charge of affray in Bristol.

"The selection panel believe Ollie's performances and character suggest he is well suited to global cricket".

England captain Joe Root believes batting at four could be "quite a jump" for Ollie Pope but is confident the Surrey youngster will rise to the challenge in the second Test against India.

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Ollie Pope has made three hundreds and a fifty in eight County Championship games for Surrey this seasonEngland v India, second Specsavers TestVenue: Lord's Dates: 9-13 August Time: 11:00 BSTCoverage: Ball-by-ball Test Match Special commentary on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra, Radio 4 LW and the BBC Sport website.

Pope was the club's third-highest scorer for the 2017/18 season, making 819 runs at 51.19, including three centuries and a highest score of 128 against Bankstown.

Malan made his Test debut against South Africa last summer at the Oval but the Middlesex captain has averaged 27.84 in his first 15 Tests, while he dropped catching chances in Birmingham. "I think I've had a good season so far, and from the people I've spoken to, they've given me the confidence in my own game to take the next step", he added.

It has been a whirlwind rise and Pope admits it has been hard to take in.

Pope does not expect to be overawed by the occasion, with social media giving him time to get used to the idea of his maiden call-up and previous experience of playing at the home of cricket helping settle any nerves.

"I've played with him since we were 14, 15 - as soon as he came over from Zim (Zimbabwe) - and we've gone through the same path. I need to just keep riding the wave". I didn't know what it was like to face Wasim Akram, Waqar Younis, Imran Khan and Abdul Qadir. "Hearing those stories are pretty inspirational - they make you realise what you can do".

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