England captain Joe Root has announced the playing 11 for the one-off test match against Ireland that would start from July 24th, Wednesday at the Lord's stadium in London. This will be Ireland's third-ever test match and the first one against England. Unlike the traditional five-day test match format, this one-off fixture will be a four-day encounter.
The 29-year-old Jason Roy has been a key figure for England in limited-overs cricket for the past four years and was also one of the primary reasons for England's triumph in the 2019 ICC Cricket World Cup. In ODI cricket, Roy has scored 3381 runs in 83 games at an average of 42.8 and strike rate of 107.4.
While England have transformed their fortunes in limited-overs cricket to a commendable extent, their performances in Test cricket haven't been as good. One of the primary reasons for their perceived struggle has been the failings at the top of the order. The likes of Sam Robson, Mark Stoneman, Haseeb Hameed and Keaton Jennings have all been trialled for the opening slots.
With none of them proving to be worthy contributors, England have turned towards Jason Roy, who has been considered as a limited-overs specialist for the majority of his professional cricketing career. In 81 matches, the right-handed batsman averages 38.38 while playing mostly in the middle-order for his county team, Surrey.
The other debutant Olly Stone made his international ODI debut against Sri Lanka during England's tour of the island nation last year in October. Stone was slated to make his Test debut during the tour of the West Indies earlier this year but a stress fracture to the back meant that he had to return home early.
The 25-year-old has been earmarked as an upcoming fast-bowling star with the ability to crank up the speed, consistently bowling above 150 kph, but constant injury issues have troubled him throughout his domestic career with Northamptonshire and Warwickshire. So far, Stone has taken 123 wickets in 36 First-Class matches at an average of 25.03.
Apart from these debutants, England will go into the Test match with a relatively inexperienced line up with the likes of Rory Burns, Jack Leach and Joe Denly set to play their seventh, fifth and third match respectively.
These inclusions mean that James Anderson, who was ruled out due to a calf injury and Somerset all-rounder Lewis Gregory will miss out from featuring in the playing XI for this one-off test match.
England Playing XI v Ireland: Joe Root (c), Moeen Ali, Rory Burns, Sam Curran, Jonny Bairstow, Stuart Broad, Joe Denly, Jack Leach, Jason Roy, Olly Stone, Chris Woakes.