Leeds: Leg-spinner Adil Rashid could earn an England Test recall to face India if he changes his mind over red-ball cricket, coach Trevor Bayliss said on Thursday, with the slow bowler likely to prove a key weapon on wickets baked dry by the country's ongoing heatwave.
The 30-year-old has not played five-day cricket since December 2016 when he played the last of his 10 Tests, preferring to compete only in 50-over and 20-over formats.
Asked whether Rashid would be considered for Test selection if he was playing red-ball cricket, Bayliss said: "Possibly. This year is probably the best we've seen him bowl.
"He's bowled well in one-day cricket over the last few years but his control and his consistency this year has been top class and probably the best I've seen him bowl since I've been here.
"(Reconsidering) is a decision he's got to make. I'm not sure whether (national selector) Ed Smith's had a chat with him or not. Could he get picked in the Test team on white-ball form? Well, it's already been proven this year - it's happened once (with Jos Buttler). So I'm sure he'll be up for discussion, definitely."
Rashid is the leading wicket-taker in one-day and Twenty20 internationals for England this summer, with 25 victims, including Virat Kohli at Headingley on Tuesday with a sharply-turning delivery that left India's captain awestruck.
Rashid's performances have been delivered at a time when England are short of spin options in the five-day arena too. Moeen Ali lost his place following a difficult winter and Dom Bess and Jack Leach have been handed debuts since.
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The England and Wales Cricke Board said Wednesday that three Twenty20s and three one-day internationals will take place behind closed doors in Cape Town and Paarl starting in November.
The Indian team was initially supposed to land in Brisbane but the Queensland state health authorities did not relax their 14-day quarantine rule to allow Virat Kohli and Co to train during that period.
On Monday, officials announced an easing of restrictions after no new daily or deaths, opening the door to some good news for cricket fans.