England v Windies: What’s Your Combined Test XI?

Joe Root and Jason Holder share the Wisden Trophy befrore the series starts. England v Windies
BIRMINGHAM, ENGLAND - AUGUST 16: England captain Joe Root and West Indies captain Jason Holder pose with the series trophy at Edgbaston on August 16, 2017 in Birmingham, England. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

England v Windies: The Season Starter

 

England v Windies. The summer is finally approaching. Coronavirus please go away.

Anyway. Who makes your combined XI?

Our team has got together and picked our Combined XI and given some historical context.

Historically, the West Indies have been much stronger, but in recent times it has been a lot closer.

The West Indies have upped their preparation ahead of the start of the tour holding an intra-squad practice match behind closed doors at their training base in Old Trafford. Brathwaite XI batted first in the encounter, scoring 275. Brathwaite and Hope – the two heroes from the 2017 tour to England made 84 and 83 respectively.

But, do Brathwaite and Hope make our combined XI?

Brathwaite and Hope bat for the England v Windies preperation
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND – JUNE 23: Kraigg Brathwaite of West Indies shakes hands with Shai Hope after reaching fifty during Day One of a West Indies Warm Up match at Old Trafford on June 23, 2020 in Manchester, England. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images for ECB)

With the historic first Test Match less than a fortnight away teams lead by captain Jason Holder and Kraigg Brathwaite have battled out amidst a UK mini heatwave. Left-arm seamer Raymon Reifer had a terrific outing, picking up five squadmates wickets in just 11 balls.

Catch more of the intra-squad game here 

England are strong favourites for the three-match series, positioned four places ahead of their opposition the ICC Test Rankings.

But who would make it into a combined 11 from the two squads? We’ve had a look and picked our best XI.

England v West Indies combined XI

The Top 5

  • Rory Burns (England)
  • Kraigg Brathwaite (West Indies)
  • Shai Hope (West Indies)
  • Joe Root (c) (England)
  • Ben Stokes (England)
Joe Root and Ben Stokes run between the wickets for England vs South Africa 2019
CENTURION, SOUTH AFRICA – DECEMBER 29: Ben Stokes and Joe Root of England run during Day Four of the First Test match between England and South Africa at SuperSport Park on December 29, 2019 in Centurion, South Africa. (Photo by Philip Brown/Popperfoto/Popperfoto via Getty Images)

The Wicket Keeper and All-Rounder

  • Jos Buttler (wk) (England)
  • Jason Holder (West Indies)
Jason Holder bowls for the Windies v England in 2017 at Lords
LONDON, ENGLAND – SEPTEMBER 08: West Indies captain Jason Holder leaves the field as rain stops play during day two of the 3rd Investec Test match between England and the West Indies at Lord’s Cricket Ground on September 8, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

The Bowlers

  • Jofra Archer (England)
  • Stuart Broad (England)
  • Rakheem Cornwall (West Indies)
  • James Anderson (England)
Stuart Broad and Jofra Archer bowl for England v Windies preparation
HAMILTON, NEW ZEALAND – DECEMBER 02: Stuart Broad and Jofra Archer of England look at the ball during day 4 of the second Test match between New Zealand and England at Seddon Park on December 02, 2019 in Hamilton, New Zealand. (Photo by Gareth Copley/Getty Images)

 

Team Decisions

There are some difficult decisions to make in this team. Notably, England’s top order frailties in recent months mean that both Brathwaite and Hope start for the combined XI. Both Brathwaite and Hope have had successful Test Match careers to date, whilst none of the England top order except Burns have cemented their place.

Sam Curran and Alzarri Joseph are two young seamers who could feel aggrieved to have been left out, both have made exciting starts to their careers and will look to shine in the forthcoming series.

Ben Stokes and Jason Holder are two of the best all-rounders in the world. They both make a strong case for being the number one test all-rounder in the world.

The pace bowling group looks strong with Jofra Archer, Stuart Broad and James Anderson all making the side. Between them, they have pace, accuracy, movement and experience. They make a lethal attack in any condition, but especially playing in England or in the West Indies.

The choice of the spinner was perhaps the most difficult task. The big West Indian just gets the nod over the miserly Jack Leach. Despite his involvement in a match-winning partnership from number 11, Leach’s Test career has yet to take off with the ball in hand. In just two matches Cornwall has a best of 7/75 and has taken 13 wickets in total.

See Rakheem Cornwall In Action

It looks set to be an enthralling series between two well-matched teams. Read More About The Series Here: West Indies Tour of England

Eng v WI history – Results and Batting

Brian Lara leaves the field after scoring 400 vs England for the Windies in 2004 at Antigua
ST JOHNS, ANTIGUA – APRIL 12: Brian Lara of the West Indies leaves the field after declaring his innings on 400 not out, the highest ever test score during day three of the 4th Test match between the West Indies and England at the Recreation Ground on April 12, 2004 in St Johns, Antigua. (Photo by Tom Shaw/Getty Images)

Historically, England has played 157 test matches against the Windies between 1928 and 2019. They have won 49, lost 57 and there have been 51 draws. Their win percentage of 0.85 is their second-lowest against any test nation except Australia (0.75).

The top 5 highest run-scorers are all from the Windies. Brian Lara and Viv Richards top the list with 2983 and 2869 runs respectively. Geoffery Boycott and Graham Gooch have scored the most runs for England v Windies in the Wisden Trophy. Boycott has scored 2205 runs and Gooch has scored 2197 runs respectively.

Dennis Amiss, however, has the highest average for anyone over 1000 runs. He scored 1130 runs at an astonishing average of 70.62.

Brian Lara’s two massive scores top the list for the highest scores by an individual. Brian Lara scored 375 versus England at Antigua in 1994, to break Sir Garfield Sobers’ world record. He then followed it up, 10 years later, with 400* against the same opposition at the same venue.

Eng vs WI history – Bowling 
James Anderson picks up a wicket vs Windies 2019
BRIDGETOWN, BARBADOS – JANUARY 24: James Anderson of England celebrates after taking his 5th wicket of Alzarri Joseph of West Indies during Day Two of the First Test match between England and West Indies at Kensington Oval on January 24, 2019 in Bridgetown, Barbados. (Photo by Shaun Botterill/Getty Images)

Incredibly, the top 5 highest wicket-takers are also all from the West Indies. Curtly Ambrose and Courtney Walsh top the list with 164 and 145 wickets respectively at averages of 18.79 and 25.40.

James Anderson sits in eight place. He is the first English player to make the list. He has taken 82 wickets at an average of 22.25. Joel Garner has the lowest bowling average for anyone who has over 50 wickets. He took 92 wickets at an average of 17.93.

The best bowling figures are Curtly Ambrose’s 8-45 against England at Bridgetown in 1990. Angus Fraser tops the list for the best bowling figures by an English player. He picked up 8-53 against the West Indies at Port of Spain in 1998.

Hope you enjoyed our England v Windies article!

 

 

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