England v South Africa: Tom Westley to make debut, Dawid Malan called up

Tom Westley
Tom Westley has a highest score of 111 for Essex this season
Third Test: England v South Africa
Venue: Kia Oval, London Date: 27-31 July Time: 11:00 BST
Coverage: In-play video clips, Test Match Special radio commentary and text commentary on BBC Radio 5 live sports extra, BBC Sport website, tablets, mobiles and app.

Essex batsman Tom Westley will make his England debut in the third Test against South Africa at The Oval starting on 27 July.

The selectors confirmed the 28-year-old will bat at number three in place of Gary Ballance, who broke a finger in the second Test.

Uncapped Middlesex batsman Dawid Malan has also been named in a 13-man squad.

The four-Test series is level at 1-1 following South Africa's 340-run win at Trent Bridge.

Westley has scored 478 runs at an average of 53.11, including two centuries, for County Championship leaders Essex this season. He averages 37.44 in his first-class career.

He hit 106 not out for England Lions against a full-strength South Africa bowling attack at Worcester last month.

Malan, who made 78 off 44 balls on his international Twenty20 debut last month, could play if England select an extra batsman after being bowled out for 205 and 133 in the second Test.

The 29-year-old left-hander averages 42.50 for Middlessex in County Championship Division One this season.

Surrey opener Mark Stoneman, the third highest run-scorer in the top flight this summer, was overlooked by the selectors on his home ground.

Middlesex seamer Toby Roland-Jones, who was left out of the XI at Trent Bridge, retains his place in the squad.

'Dream come true' for Westley

Essex coach Chris Silverwood told BBC Radio 5 live that Westley's selection has come after "a lot of hard work and graft".

"It's one of those things you always dream of and then when it happens it leaves you a little bit speechless. He's over the moon and can't wait to get stuck in," he said.

"Around Test cricket and the England squad there's a lot of hype and a lot of people watching, but if you can keep everything around you as normal as possible and stay in that zone then it's business as usual and I think he can cope with the pressure.

"We're all very proud of him and can't wait to watch his performance."


BBC cricket correspondent Jonathan Agnew

This is not a panic-struck selection. One change was enforced and England had to pick another batsman after last week's defeat. Given Keaton Jennings is going to open, that ruled out Stoneman.

Westley has had a good season but has a career average of 37. To bat against South Africa in a crucial Test match at number three, that is a big step up.

Malan is an interesting choice. If you look at how England played at Trent Bridge, everyone was saying knuckle down, but they have gone for someone whose first impression of international cricket was in the T20 game. In fairness to him, though, he isn't only a limited-overs entertainer and does have the ability to play long innings.

He has had a decent first-class summer and, if chosen in the final XI, would bat at five, with Jonny Bairstow moving down to seven and Moeen Ali to eight.

England squad for third Test

Joe Root (Yorkshire, captain), Alastair Cook (Essex), Keaton Jennings (Durham), Tom Westley (Essex), Jonny Bairstow (Yorkshire), Dawid Malan (Middlesex), Ben Stokes (Durham), Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), Liam Dawson (Hampshire), Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire), Mark Wood (Durham), James Anderson (Lancashire), Toby Roland-Jones (Middlesex).


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