Buttler recalled to England Test squad, Bess earns maiden call


Lancashire's Buttler, 27, has not played first-class cricket this season but has made five successive fifties in the Indian Premier League (IPL).

Buttler is expected to slot into the England team as a specialist batsman at No. 7, meaning Jonny Bairstow will continue wicket-keeping duties.

"The first thing we talked about as a selection panel - and it coincided with one of my first trains of thought coming into the job - was how could we..."

The loss against Kolkata Knight Riders couldn't have come at a more bad time for Rajasthan Royals, who are set to lose out two of their biggest global stars in the form of Jos Buttler and Ben Stokes because of worldwide commitments.

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The Somerset bowler has been given the nod ahead of Moeen Ali after Jack Leach suffered a broken finger.

Jos Buttler has been described as an "outstanding talent" by national selector Ed Smith and a "once-in-a-generation" player by Sky Sports' Rob Key after being recalled to the England Test squad.

England squad for Pakistan series: Joe Root, James Anderson, Jonny Bairstow, Dom Bess, Stuart Broad, Jos Buttler, Alastair Cook, Dawid Malan, Ben Stokes, Mark Stoneman, Chris Woakes, Mark Wood.

Buttler, who has not played red-ball cricket for England since the tour of India in November and December 2016, has found a rich vein of form for Rajasthan Royals in the IPL this month, with a tournament-record five consecutive half-centuries, including unbeaten scores of 95 and 94 in his last two innings. All-rounder Ben Stokes too is a part of the squad.

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The other surprising inclusion is 20-year-old spinner Dominic Bess.

It was appropriate that Dom Bess was in the Exeter branch of IKEA when the call came from England's new chairman of selectors Ed Smith. "He has impressed everyone with his performances for Somerset and when he has been given opportunities with England representative teams", said Smith.

Smith said it was "the flawless moment" to reintroduce Buttler to Test cricket, adding: "He will bring unique qualities to the Test team".

"With Jack Leach missing out due to injury, the selection panel wanted to invest opportunity in a young spin bowler. Jos is playing with great confidence and flair, and he will bring unique qualities to the Test team", national selector Ed Smith was quoted as saying by the European Central Bank. "Dom's strong form, character and all-round abilities presented a compelling case".

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