England hopefuls head to training camps in India, South Africa

A clutch of prospective England batsmen and spin bowlers will embark on a specialist training camp in Mumbai this week in an effort to hone their skills in unfamiliar conditions.

On the day England fell to an innings defeat in New Zealand, the ECB announced that batsmen Will Jacks, James Bracey, Dan Lawrence, Keaton Jennings and Sam Hain would travel to India with spinners Dom Bess, Mason Crane and Amar Virdi for a three-week camp starting on Tuesday.

Jacks, the 21-year-old Surrey batsman, produced a jaw-dropping 25-ball century during a pre-season T10 clash with Lancashire in Dubai in March and, on the other end of the spectrum, Jennings is hoping to resurrect his international career having played the last of his 17 Tests against West Indies in February.

The batsmen will work with Surrey assistant head coach Vikram Solanki, while the spinners will train under the guidance of Gloucestershire head coach Richard Dawson and former Sri Lanka spinner Rangana Herath.

The camp encompasses a series of so-called “Individualised Programmes” of training for players aimed at “delivering better prepared players” to England head coach Chris Silverwood, according to ECB Performance Director Mo Bobat.

“The Individualised Programmes are a great opportunity for some of our best young cricketers to focus on specific areas of their game in unfamiliar and challenging conditions around the world,” Bobat said. “Some of the players involved are in England’s immediate plans, while others will be working on areas that will benefit the national team’s medium and long-term needs.”

The ECB also confirmed that Jonny Bairstow would attend a training camp in South Africa from December 1-14, working with former England batsman Jonathan Trott in his bid to return to England’s Test squad. Bairstow, who averaged 23.77 during the Ashes, was dropped for the two-Test tour of New Zealand. He was briefly called back into the Test squad during the T20 series against New Zealand as cover for Joe Denly but returned home when Denly recovered from an ankle injury in time for the first Test at Mount Maunganui.

Earlier this month, Ashley Giles, the managing director of England’s men’s cricket, revealed that James Anderson would take the next step in his return from injury at the camp in Potchefstroom. Anderson will be joined by fellow quicks Mark Wood, Olly Stone, Craig Overton and Ollie Robinson.

Anderson and Wood have been undergoing intensive rehabilitation with ECB staff with a view to being available for selection for England’s tour of South Africa starting next month.

Anderson has been sidelined since he broke down after bowling just four overs in the first Ashes Test in August with a recurrence of a calf injury he suffered while playing for Lancashire in early July. Wood was ruled out for the remainder of the season after suffering a side strain during the World Cup final and he has since had surgery on his right knee. Stone, meanwhile, is recovering from a stress fracture to his back.

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