Adelaide: The England selectors on Saturday called up uncapped left-arm pacer George Garton as a cover for injured Jake Ball for the team’s final warm-up match in Townsville ahead of the first Ashes Test in Brisbane.
Ball suffered an ankle injury after falling awkwardly just four overs into his opening spell on Thursday, the second day of the ongoing four-day tour match against a Cricket Australia XI here.
The Nottinghamshire pacer was forced to withdraw from the day-night fixture and England’s medical team is currently monitoring the extent of his injury.
“The England medical team will assess the injury over the next seven days and he will play no further part in the Adelaide match,” the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) said in a statement.
Garton, a 20-year-old with only nine first-class games behind him, will join up with the squad ahead of next week’s warm-up game in Townsville.
“National selectors have called up England Lions and Sussex left-arm seamer George Garton as cover in Townsville for the final warm-up match ahead of the first Test, which gets underway at the Gabba, Brisbane on November 23. He will then rejoin the Lions party for their camp in Brisbane and Perth,” the statement added.
With England keen not to over-bowl any of their main seamers ahead of that first Test, Garton will add variety to the squad in Townsville. He is expected to join the Lions tour, which arrives in Australia next week once Ball recovers.
Ball’s injury has come as another blow to an English attack, which lost all-rounder Ben Stokes and Toby Roland-Jones before even setting foot in Australia.
The tourists then saw pacer Steven Finn fly home after sustaining a knee injury while batting in the nets in Perth, while Moeen Ali, their senior spinner, is yet to play on tour after suffering a side strain. Tom Curran joined up with the squad on Friday as cover for Finn.