Wood returns for second Pakistan Test, Pope retains gloves as Foakes misses out

By Sports Desk December 08, 2022

Mark Wood returns to the England team in the only change for the second Test and Ollie Pope has been named as wicketkeeper-batter once again as Ben Foakes misses out.

Paceman Wood has recovered from an elbow problem and replaces Liam Livingstone, who suffered a tour-ending knee injury.

Pope took the gloves in a famous victory in the first Test at Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium after Foakes missed out due to illness.

Foakes was available for selection for a second Test that starts at Multan Cricket Stadium on Friday, but the man captain Ben Stokes regards as the best keeper in the world has not been included.

"The selection is just for this Test," captain Ben Stokes said on Thursday. "I'll still keep saying he's [Foakes] the best keeper in the world, so it must sound silly for us to not pick him.

"Adding Mark Wood into the side gives us a better chance of taking 20 wickets.

"We did say to Ben to not take this as anything for the future. We didn't have this on our radar until the illness he unfortunately had before the first Test. This is definitely no sign for his future."

Stokes revealed he has spoken to Ben Duckett about the possibility of taking over from Pope as keeper if he finds the demands of donning the gloves at batting at number too much during the match.

The tourists will be looking to seal a first away Test series win over Pakistan for 22 years.

England team: Crawley, Duckett, Pope, Root, Brook, Stokes, Jacks, Robinson, Leach, Wood, Anderson.

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