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England considering all-pace attack for Centurion encounter
England News

England considering all-pace attack for Centurion encounter

England coach Chris Silverwood has admitted his side might go for an all-pace attack for the first Test at Centurion.

England had gone for a similar strategy on their recent tour of New Zealand, where Jack Leach was left out of the equation in the second Test at Hamilton.

With the track at Centurion likely to assist seam bowlers, England might be tempted to go without a specialist spin bowler.

"Obviously in Hamilton, we looked at all the stats of who took wickets at the ground, and it showed that spin didn't really play much part in the games, or certainly have much effect on the games," said Silverwood.

“It’s not rocket science and those stats are readily available. Look at the amount of wickets taken by seam and spin in Centurion and the averages that go with them. They suggest seam is the way forward. We’re seriously looking at that.

The former England quick denied the move was being considered as there was any lack of quality spin bowlers present at his disposal.

“We’re just looking at what is effective on this ground,” said Silverwood. “We’ve got good resources in the spin department. Leach is coming back to fitness and we’ve got Dom Bess here, while Parky bowled nicely in Benoni.”

Jofra Archer’s fitness has been a concern for England ahead of the Tests with Stuart Broad and Jack Leach also joining the list. The trio had to miss the warm-up matches with illness.

The trio took part in the training session on Monday, with Broad and Archer bowling five overs in the nets.

"We saw how he was running in and bowling fast in those nets," said Silverwood on Archer's fitness.

"He bowled a few overs with me the day before and he just backed it up again, so if we can see a few more sessions like that then he'd throw his hat in the ring.

"Maybe there's a little bit more caution around it, if I'm brutally honest, but more than anything it's for his well-being as well. If he's going out on the pitch we need to make sure he's 100 per cent, but equally he's played a lot of cricket as well - albeit maybe not at Test level.”