England name unchanged Ashes squad for final Test
The Ashes squad for the final test will remain unchanged and England will face Anderson’s call
The fast bowler could be replaced by Ollie Robinson or Josh Tongue
Moeen Ali likely to continue at No 3 in batting line-up
A decision must now be made regarding Jimy Anderson’s participation at the Oval for the final Ashes Test of the summer.
England’s hopes of setting up a winner-takes-all decider this week were dashed by bad weather in Manchester on Sunday. As a result of the draw, Australia retains the urn with one Test remaining, but England will try to rally as a group and win in London for a second consecutive home Ashes victory.
A 14-man squad has been selected for the fifth Test, which begins on Thursday, and all eyes will be on Anderson. With four wickets at an average of 76.75 in three Tests, Anderson, who turns 41 on Sunday, has struggled to take wickets throughout the series.
Having been rested for England’s win at Headingley, Ollie Robinson’s return to fitness after a back spasm will be a tough call for captain Ben Stokes and head coach Brendon McCullum in the capital after a solitary wicket was claimed at Old Trafford.
With central contracts set to be handed out later this year, it could mean Anderson has played for England whites for the last time at the Oval.
Despite struggling with stiffness towards the end of the Old Trafford Test, Mark Wood and Chris Woakes have performed well since being drafted into the XI, while Stuart Broad has claimed the most wickets during the entire series.
The Sussex seamer Robinson claimed 10 wickets in the first three Tests of the series, while Josh Tongue caught the eye at Lord’s with his aggression.