England v South Africa – 3rd Test preview

After an impressive victory in Joe’s Root first game as Test captain, England were brought back down to earth in the Second Test at Trent Bridge.

Batting capitulations in both innings meant that England were never really in the game as South Africa recorded their first win at the ground for 52 years.

The Third Test starts at The Oval on Thursday, and there will be a new face in the England top-order.

Essex batsman Tom Westley looks certain to bat at three, after scoring 478 runs at an average of 53:11 for the County Championship table-toppers this summer.

Westley comes in for Gary Ballance after he broke a finger at Trent Bridge, whilst uncapped Middlesex batsman Dawid Malan is named in the 13-man squad.

Underwhelming performances with the bat mean that there will be a temptation to play Malan ahead of second-spinner Liam Dawson. Seamer Toby Roland-Jones is another option but is unlikely to replace one of the frontline pace bowlers.

South Africa, meanwhile, are likely to be unchanged after dominating in Nottingham.

England squad: Joe Root (Yorkshire, captain), Alastair Cook (Essex), Keaton Jennings (Durham), Tom Westley (Essex), Jonny Bairstow (Yorkshire), Dawid Malan (Middlesex), Ben Stokes (Durham), Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), Liam Dawson (Hampshire), Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire), Mark Wood (Durham), James Anderson (Lancashire), Toby Roland-Jones (Middlesex).


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