Tymal Mills named in England T20 World Cup squad as Ben Stokes is left out

Pace bowler called-up for first time since February 2017, while all-rounder's absence for the tournament taking place in the UAE was widely predicted

Tymal Mills last played for England in February 2017. PA
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England have called-up fast bowler Tymal Mills to their preliminary T20 World Cup squad while all-rounder Ben Stokes has not been named in the 15-man group.

Sussex left-armer Mills has not played for England since February 2017 but was name-checked by captain Eoin Morgan as being in the mix earlier in the season and excelled as a death bowler for Southern Brave in the inaugural edition of The Hundred.

The 29-year-old effectively takes up a vacancy created by Jofra Archer’s injury enforced absence due to his continuing elbow problems.

“He has all the skills to succeed at this level,” Silverwood said in a statement. “His exceptional pace is a standout, and the way he has spearheaded Sussex and Southern Brave’s respective attacks in the short-form game has shown that he relishes the pressures of the big stage. We can't wait to see him play in a major international tournament.”

As expected, Stokes has not been named in the squad for the tournament that will be taking place in the UAE and Oman. Stokes is currently taking a break from all forms of cricket as he looks to manage his mental health and also to recover from a badly broken finger sustained playing in Rajasthan Royals' opening match of the IPL in April.

He did make a comeback during the ODI series win over Pakistan in July, when he lead a scratch side to victory after the first-choice squad was forced into isolation due to Covid-19 outbreak.

Silverwood said this week that no pressure would be put on Stokes to make himself available for the tournament.

“I haven't spoken to him as yet,” he said. “I want to give him as much space as possible. There are people talking to him outside of me but it is something we will be revisiting shortly. I will not be putting pressure on him or rushing him.”

Seamer David Willey is back in the fold after being axed from England’s triumphant World Cup squad two years ago, making way at the eleventh hour for the newly qualified Archer. Two years on he can finally banish some of the disappointment after edging Tom Curran to the final bowling place.

Curran has been a mainstay of England’s white-ball squad for several years but has struggled to put together consistent performances recently. He has been named as one of three standby players who will shadow the main squad, alongside Hampshire duo Liam Dawson and James Vince.

Vince will provide batting cover, while Dawson has edged out Lancashire leg-spinner Matt Parkinson as the back-up spin option. Moeen Ali and Adil Rashid are the only two specialist slow bowlers in the squad, despite the UAE pitches being known as spin-friendly.

England T20 World Cup squad: E Morgan (c), M Ali, J Bairstow, S Billings, J Buttler, S Curran, C Jordan, L Livingstone, D Malan, T Mills, A Rashid, J Roy, D Willey, C Woakes, M Wood.

Reserves: T Curran, L Dawson, J Vince.

Updated: September 09, 2021, 11:12 AM