Thursday, July 8th, 2021


Worcestershire Cricket Steering Group Chairman Paul Pridgeon says he “cannot understand” why keeper Ben Cox has been overlooked from the revised England squad announced for the ODI and T20 series against Pakistan.

England announced a new party of players and officials for the three ODIs, and three T20Is after three players and four management team members from the original squad tested positive for COVID-19.

Pridgeon believes Cox is “entitled to feel aggrieved” after not being chosen in a squad.

The 29-year-old has been a model of consistency behind the stumps and also chipped in with valuable runs in addition to being recently appointed Worcestershire Rapids Vitality Blast captain for games where Moeen Ali is not available.

Pridgeon said: “This is a purely personal observation, but I simply cannot see how Ben Cox does not get a gig in the new England squad announced yesterday.

“I suppose you could say that from the club’s point of view, it is a bonus because it means Ben will be playing for us as our captain at a vital part of the season in the Vitality Blast group stages.

“But we want our players to be selected for England if it is merited, and I simply do not understand how he has not been selected in the revamped squad for the ODIs and T20Is against Pakistan.

“Of course, selection is an individual thing which we all see differently, and I fully respect the opinion of Chris Silverwood and all the people who select the squads.

“But on this occasion, if I were Ben Cox, I would feel massively aggrieved at not having been selected.

“He has been an outstanding keeper for many years now, a very consistent keeper at a high standard who also makes runs, and this would have been an opportunity to recognise that.”

“He is 29, has more than a decade of first-team cricket behind him, is in his prime and got a shot with the Lions last year in Australia.”