Kiesy named in England provisional World Cup Squad

Kies EnglandEngland have named Somerset keeper Craig Kieswetter as part of a 30-man provisional squad for the ICC Cricket World Cup in early 2015.

This is the first time Kieswetter has been called up by England since he flew out to cover an injury during the World T20 Cup in India and Bangladesh in March of this year.

Kieswetter is unlikely to take the gloves in the final 15-man squad from former Somerset batsman-keeper Jos Buttler, who is now England’s first choice in all three formats of the game.

However, Kieswetter’s T20 form in 2014 could see him challenge for a place solely as a batsman, as well as provide back-up if Buttler were to be injured.

The South Africa-born gloveman has played 46 one-day internationals to date, making his debut in early 2010, shortly after he qualified to play for England. He made his highest score in only his third game, a century against Bangladesh at Chittagong.

The following year, Kieswetter averaged 51.00 in the five-match series at home to Sri Lanka, but struggled after that, eventually losing his place to Buttler midway through a disappointing series against India in January 2013.

In total he has scored 1,054 runs in ODIs at an average of just over 30, with one century and five fifties.

Kieswetter and Buttler are not the only wicket-keeping options in the England’s provisional World Cup squad though. Yorkshire’s Johnny Bairstow is one of six Yorkshire players included in the squad, despite only playing seven ODIs in the past three years. However Kieswetter’s ability to open the innings and play the pinch-hitter role provides the selectors with another option, which should put him ahead of Bairstow in the reckoning.

Kieswetter has just finished a six-week stint playing for the Chevrolet Warriors in South Africa’s Ram Slam T20 tournament, where he averaged just over 20 in ten matches. He will now reunite with Somerset T20 overseas signing Dirk Nannes to play for Sydney Thunder in Australia’s Big Bash League.

That tournament gets underway later this month and a good start could stand Kieswetter in good stead, with the England selectors due to trim down their provisional squad of 30 down to 15 before Christmas.

That squad will compete firstly in a Tri-Series against Australia and India in the New Year, with the World Cup taking place immediately afterwards.

  • Craig Overton, who will be on tour in South Africa with England Lions after Christmas, can perhaps count himself a little unlucky not to make the provisional squad for the World Cup. However the selectors clearly hold him in high regard after an impressive domestic season, when he really started to come of age. If he continues that form into 2015, it will only be a matter of time before he starts to challenge for a place in the senior ODI side alongside Lewis Gregory, who for many was a surprise omission from the Lions squads to South Africa.
  • Meanwhile, not for the first time, many Somerset supporters will feel that Pete Trego has been unfairly overlooked for the World Cup, despite back-to-back centuries and a batting average of almost 40 in the Royal London 50-over competition this year.
  • The provisional 30-man England squad for the World Cup is as follows: Alastair Cook (Essex) (Capt), Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), James Anderson (Lancashire), Jonathan Bairstow (Yorkshire), Gary Ballance (Yorkshire), Ian Bell (Warwickshire), Ravi Bopara (Essex), Tim Bresnan (Yorkshire), Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire), Jack Brooks (Yorkshire), Jos Buttler (Lancashire), Steven Finn (Middlesex), Harry Gurney (Nottinghamshire), Alex Hales (Nottinghamshire), Chris Jordan (Sussex), Craig Kieswetter (Somerset), Eoin Morgan (Middlesex), Stephen Parry (Lancashire), Samit Patel (Nottinghamshire), Liam Plunkett (Yorkshire), Boyd Rankin (Warwickshire), Adil Rashid (Yorkshire), Joe Root (Yorkshire), Jason Roy (Surrey), Ben Stokes (Durham), James Taylor (Nottinghamshire), James Tredwell (Kent), James Vince (Hampshire), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire), Luke Wright (Sussex).

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