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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 21 August 2018

Adil Rashid gets England recall for India cricket Test series

Leg-spinner picked to play in first five matches despite opting out of playing first-class matches

England leg-spinner Adil Rashid had opted out of playing County Championship cricket this season. Getty
England leg-spinner Adil Rashid had opted out of playing County Championship cricket this season. Getty

Adil Rashid is in line to play his first home Test next week after his shock recall to a 13-man England squad that also features uncapped seamer Jamie Porter.

Rashid's inclusion alongside his fellow spinner Moeen Ali, for England's 1,000th Test, against India at Edgbaston, comes despite his decision last winter to quit all first-class cricket this year while he prepares for a home World Cup campaign in 2019.

It is therefore an unprecedented move by national selector Ed Smith and his colleagues to pick the 30-year-old Yorkshire leg-spinner – at a time when he has not played a red-ball match for 10 months, with none scheduled for his county in the foreseeable future.

Porter's call-up, in place of Chris Woakes, who England believe is still short of his best as he returns from injury and will therefore miss his home Test, is also a surprise.

But it is Rashid's return, after winning the last of his 10 Test caps in Chennai more than 18 months ago, which will dominate the headlines.

It comes on the back of his much-improved white-ball international form of late and follows his personal guarantee to England that he will re-commit long-term to Test cricket.

Smith said: "Before the selection meeting, Adil had confirmed his availability to play Test cricket for England for whole of this summer and the upcoming winter tours to Sri Lanka and West Indies."

He spelt out that Rashid's current arrangement can only continue on the understanding he returns to domestic red-ball cricket next summer.

"Following his earlier decision in February 2018, Adil has a white-ball only contract to play for Yorkshire this summer," Smith said.

Smith added: "That arrangement is unchanged by his selection for England.

"However, Adil fully understands that if he wishes to be eligible for Test cricket in the 2019 season, he must have a county contract to play four-day cricket.

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"Moving forward, England Test players must be committed to the county championship.

"Clearly, the one-off circumstances around Adil's return to the Test squad are unusual.

"However, the selection panel was unanimous in believing that Adil should be selected in England's squad."

Rashid's case was underlined when he bowled India captain Virat Kohli with a memorable leg-break as England clinched the one-day international series on his home ground at Headingley last week.

England Test squad

Joe Root (captain), Moeen Ali, James Anderson, Jonny Bairstow (wicketkeeper), Stuart Broad, Jos Buttler, Alastair Cook, Sam Curran, Keaton Jennings, Dawid Malan, Jamie Porter, Adil Rashid, Ben Stokes.

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