Dubai: After giving opening batsman Jason Roy his debut call-up to England's Test side, national selector Ed Smith lauded the player, saying there has never been any doubt on Roy's talent.
Roy is all set to play the one-off Test match against Ireland at Lord's next week and the player is likely to included to be in the side's team for the Ashes.
"I think we have all seen him grow and improve as a player in white-ball cricket. There has never been any doubt about his talent, audacity or his presence at the crease - it is fantastic. He has also gained improved mastery and adaptability. I think he is a more complete player now than he ever has been. It just felt like absolutely the right time for Jason to make his Test debut," International Cricket Council (ICC) quoted Smith as saying.
Roy amassed 443 runs from seven innings in the recently concluded ICC Men's World Cup and he was a vital cog in England's World Cup-winning squad.
The player was also named in the team of the tournament by the apex cricketing body ICC. Smith said that it felt like the right time to get Roy included in the Test lineup.
"It is no great secret the selectors have long been admirers of Jason. The big question with Roy was when was the ideal time if he was going to make the move into Test cricket? Joe Root and I spoke at length months ago about the scenario in which Roy finished the World Cup confident, full of runs and went straight into the Ashes and that's what we've done. It feels like a really good time for Jason to join the Test team as an opener. He's in and has our full backing," Smith said.
England's national selectors have been known to get players included in the Test lineup on the back of successful performances in the limited-overs format. In 2018, England included wicket-keeper batsman Jos Buttler in the Test team against India after his match-winning performances in the shorter format.
"Going back to that first decision last May when coming in as selector it just felt like exactly the right time for Jos to come back into the Test team. Although I wouldn't compare them because they are very different players and different people, in the same way, it feels like the right time for Jason. He's playing very well, growing and developing all the time and it's an exciting prospect for us," Smith said.
England won their first World Cup as they tipped New Zealand in the finals on the basis of boundary countback rule as the two teams could not be separated despite the 50-over match and subsequent super over.
Following the World Cup, England will next host Australia for the Ashes series, which is set to take place from 1 August to 16 September.
Before the Ashes, England will play against Ireland in a four-day Test at Lord's from 24 July.
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CSA said about 50 COVID-19 RTPCR tests on players and support staff were conducted prior to entering the bio-bubble here for the limited overs series, starting on 27 November.
As per the provisional schedule, England will host India across August and September in five Test match series.
Jos Buttler said CSA's issues had led to him fearing the tour the first on South African soil since the coronavirus outbreak might be canceled.