Did not expect it: England pacer Josh Tongue on Ashes series selection
England have retained the same group of 16 players from the one-off Test against Ireland for the first two Ashes Tests.
LONDON: England pacer Josh Tongue, who took a five-wicket haul on his international debut during a one-off Test against Ireland, said that he did not expect to be in the national squad for the Ashes series against Australia and termed his selection as a special moment for him and his family.
England has announced their 16-member squad for the first two matches of the Ashes series which will start from June 16. England have retained the same group of 16 players from the one-off Test against Ireland for the first two Ashes Tests.
Josh Tongue, who made his Test debut against Ireland has made his place in the squad alongside James Anderson and Ollie Robinson, who were ruled out of the Lord's Test.
Reflecting on his selection, Tongue told Sky Sports, "I did not really expect to be in it, to be fair. It is very special for me and my family." The pacer is also "over the moon" after getting a five-wicket haul on debut.
"A week ago I did not know if I would be playing for Worcestershire or coming here. To play at Lord's and to take five wickets was a very special moment. I grew up wanting to play for England and when that came I was over the moon."
"My first wicket was a blur but hitting that line and length first ball and taking two wickets in my first over [in the second innings] took the pressure off," concluded Tongue.
Coming to the Test match against Ireland, England won the match by 10 wickets on Sunday after being set only 11 runs to chase. Ireland gained a lead of just 10 runs, ending their second innings at 362 with crucial knocks coming from Mark Adair (88), Andy McBrine (86) and Harry Tector (51). Tongue took 5/66 in the second innings.
By posting 524/4 declared in their first innings thanks to knocks from Ollie Pope (205) and Ben Duckett (182), England had earlier gained a 352-run lead over the visitors, who were bundled out for 172 in the first innings, with Stuart Broad taking 5/51. James McCollum (36), Paul Stirling (30) and Curtis Campher (33) were key scorers for Ireland in the first innings.
Pope was given 'Player of the Match' award for his double ton.
England squad for first two Ashes Tests: Ben Stokes (c), Ollie Pope, Jonny Bairstow (wk), Joe Root, James Anderson, Stuart Broad, Harry Brook, Jack Leach, Ben Duckett, Zak Crawley, Matthew Potts, Ollie Robinson, Dan Lawrence, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood, Josh Tongue. (