ngland have decided against bolstering their options ahead of the Fourth Test at Old Trafford as they look to continue their bid for a remarkable Ashes comeback.
The home side have named what is effectively an unchanged 14-man squad, the only difference from the 15 players picked for the Headingley Test being the absence of vice-captain Ollie Pope.
Pope was initially selected for Leeds but then ruled out ahead of the game after scans showed a dislocated shoulder suffered in the Second Test at Lord’s would require surgery.
Jonny Bairstow will keep the gloves despite his continuing struggles behind the stumps, with England having decided against a mid-series recall for Surrey wicketkeeper Ben Foakes.
Dan Lawrence keeps his place as the spare batter in the squad even after being overlooked as a replacement for Pope at No3, while Ollie Robinson is still included in the hope that the nine-day gap between matches will be sufficient for the seamer to recover from the back spasm that saw him bowl fewer than 12 overs at Headingley. Even if Robinson is fit, however, he could make way for James Anderson, who was left out of the Third Test but looks likely to return on his home ground.
Josh Tongue is also waiting on the wings should England decide to further refresh their seam attack but the biggest selection dilemma for Stokes and McCullum will be around who bats at No3.
Harry Brook was promoted up the order for the first time in Leeds but made just three runs in the first innings before the experiment was shelved and Moeen Ali volunteered to take on the role during England’s chase.
Moeen was bowled for five, but the switch allowed Brook to return to his favourite slot at five, from which he made the vital 75 runs that anchored England’s successful pursuit.