Ashes 2021-22, Boxing Day Test: England announces playing XI, Bairstow replaces underperforming Rory Burns
England has not had the best performance in the Ashes 2021-22 against Australia. Ahead of the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne, it has announced its playing Xi. Jonny Bairstow has replaced an underperforming Rory Burns.
It has been a below-par performance from England in the 2021-22 Ashes against Australia. Trailing 0-2 in the five-Test series, it aims to bounce back, starting with the Boxing Day Test at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) from Sunday. Meanwhile, England has confirmed its playing XI for this Test.
As per the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announcement, the team management has taken a bold step to make four changes in the XI from the Adelaide Test. The notable one happens to be in the form of opener Rory Burns, who has been dropped following a string of poor runs. Wicketkeeper-batter Jonny Bairstow has replaced him.
On the other hand, Zak Crawley is coming in for Olie Pope. Also, all-rounder Chris Woakes and pacer Stuart Broad have been replaced. England has decided to bring back spinner Jack Leach while Mark Wood is also back as the pacer. Although the MCG track is generally pace-friendly, it is expected to aid both pacers and spinners, as per the chief curator.
Also, Australia has confirmed its playing XI. While uncapped pacer Scott Boland has been handed his debut, he will be replacing an injured pacer Jhye Richardson. Meanwhile, fellow pacer Josh Hazlewood is unavailable due to a side strain, while seamer Mitchell Starc keeps his place despite a small niggle in his leg.
ENG XI: Haseeb Hameed, Zak Crawley, Dawid Malan, Joe Root (c), Ben Stokes, Jonny Bairstow, Jos Buttler (wk), Mark Wood, Ollie Robinson, Jack Leach and James Anderson.
AUS XI: David Warner, Marcus Harris, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Cameron Green, Alex Carey (wk), Pat Cummins (c), Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon and Scott Boland.