England will host the Cricket World Cup in 2019, and will likely enter the tournament as the standout favorites.
The number one ODI team in the world playing on home soil should be difficult to beat, and Eoin Morgan and his squad will be expected to lift the trophy.
Here’s who we think might make up their 15-man roster:
1) EOIN MORGAN (C):
The Skipper. An easy inclusion, although Morgan himself has said he wouldn’t hesitate to drop himself from the playing XI should he lose form.
2) JOE ROOT:
Another easy one. Joe Root, even if present form betrays him, is the best English batsman. He’s in the team.
3) MOEEN ALI:
Devastating finger spin mixed with a tremendous aptitude for hitting sixes. I like watching Moeen Ali.
4) JOS BUTTLER:
The experienced wicketkeeper, a leader in the dressing room, and capable of flashing the willow. Fireworks display to be expected at some point from Buttler.
5) BEN STOKES:
At times, Ben Stokes is England’s best batsman, England’s best bowler, and England’s best fielder. He is nothing short of a cricketing dream.
6) JASON ROY:
When Roy’s on, he’s really on. A crisp striker of the ball, his status as England’s opener has been safer than it has been for some time.
7) ALEX HALES:
Alex Hales likely won’t appear in the first XI but he’s a great option to have available in case of injury or loss of form. His gigantic frame is more than capable of taking any bowler in the world over the rope, so don’t rule out seeing him at some point.
8) JONNY BAIRSTOW:
The ginger wizard has been in astonishing form in limited overs cricket recently, showing his class time and time again at the top of the order. A worthy companion for Roy.
9) TOM CURRAN:
Tom Curran has shown himself to be a superb pace bowler in the limited overs format for Surrey. Particularly adept at the death, the 23-year-old can deliver precise yorkers and surprising bouncers.
10) CHRIS WOAKES:
I imagine Chris Woakes will be leading the attack for England. A veteran pace bowler, fans will be keeping their fingers crossed that the all-rounder can avoid injury.
11) ADIL RASHID:
The Yorkshire spinner is one of England’s most deadly weapons in the middle of an innings. Able to frustrate the run flow or attack for wickets, Rashid is a superbly capable leg-break option.
12) LIAM PLUNKETT:
Liam Plunkett is a phenomenal option to keep in reserve. A massively experienced weapon, the 33-year-old will be another senior member of the squad.
13) DAVID WILLEY:
If you want a left-arm pace bowler, Willey’s your man. A good batsman for the final few overs too, the Yorkshire seamer can add another 30 to a score in the flash of an eye.
14) LIAM DAWSON:
Similar to Willey, Dawson would make a good depth option due to his ability with bat and ball. Making the third spinner in the squad, the Hampshire man would be able to sit comfortably in the middle of the batting order too.
15) OLLY STONE:
England is likely to want one express pace bowler in the squad and I think that will be Olly Stone. Mark Wood’s injury record makes him a risky pick, and Stone has had a good start to his England career.
JUST MISSED OUT:
Such is the strength in depth of English cricket at the moment, some top class players will miss out on the World Cup if that predicted squad is correct. Sam Curran, Chris Jordan, Sam Billings, Jake Ball, James Vince, Joe Denly, Mark Wood and Craig Overton would all feel a bit aggrieved if they did not get selected.