Gary Ballance recalled by England but James Anderson misses out

Gary Ballance
Gary Ballance averages 33.64 in the County Championship this season
England v Pakistan, first Investec Test
Venue: Lord's Dates: Thursday, 14 July - Monday, 18 July
Coverage: Ball-by-ball Test Match Special commentary on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra, Radio 4 LW, online, tablets, mobiles and BBC Sport app. Live text commentary and in-play highlights on the BBC Sport website.

Yorkshire batsman Gary Ballance has been recalled to the England side for the first Test against Pakistan at Lord's next week.

England's leading Test wicket-taker James Anderson misses out with a shoulder injury.

Middlesex pace bowler Toby Roland-Jones earns a first call-up and will vie with Jake Ball for a place in the XI.

Ben Stokes, Jos Buttler and Durham all-rounder Scott Borthwick have all been overlooked.

Left-hander Ballance, 26, has not played a Test since last year's Ashes and replaces Nick Compton, who has taken a break from the game.

Compton, who struggled in the series win over Sri Lanka, was likely to be replaced anyway, leaving England with a spot to fill at number three.

That will be taken by Joe Root, who will move up the order from four.

That leaves a place in the middle order, with Stokes and Buttler both thought to have been in contention after coach Trevor Bayliss said either could play as a specialist batsman - all-rounder Stokes is not yet fit to bowl after knee surgery, while wicketkeeper Buttler has impressed with the bat in limited-overs cricket.

Borthwick was a candidate for a second Test cap after impressive form batting at number three for Durham.

But Ballance gets the nod to earn his 16th Test cap and looks set to bat at five behind James Vince, who is retained from the Sri Lanka series.

He scored a century for Yorkshire against Middlesex this week, but still only averages 33.64 in the County Championship this season.

"He has been in recent form with the bat for Yorkshire in the Championship," said national selector James Whitaker. "Gary is mentally strong and we feel that he will add quality and experience to England's middle order."

Toby Roland-Jones
Toby Roland-Jones is seventh on the list of leading wicket-takers in Division One of the County Championship this season

That century at Scarborough was made against a Middlesex attack including right-armer Roland-Jones, who has taken 30 wickets in the County Championship this season.

The 28-year-old will probably have to get past fellow uncapped bowler Ball in order to earn a place in the side, the Nottinghamshire man having been part of the England squad for the Sri Lanka series.

"Toby Roland-Jones has been a consistent performer in the County Championship over the last few years and deserves his chance," added Whitaker.

Whoever plays will take the place of Anderson, who injured his right shoulder in the third and final Test against Sri Lanka and was not deemed fit enough for consideration.

England squad for first Test against Pakistan: Cook (c), Hales, Root, Vince, Ballance, Bairstow (wk), Moeen, Woakes, Broad, Finn, Ball, Roland-Jones.


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