Dropped: England skipper brutally axed

Joe Root is being phased out of England's Twenty20 plans with the World Cup less than a year away.

Test captain Root has been excluded from a full-strength squad to play three T20 matches in South Africa in February.

Instead, England have chosen batsmen they believe have more power and six-hitting potential.

England insist Root remains part of their plans in T20 cricket, but it is likely Root in future will have to concentrate on Tests and one-dayers.

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England's Joe Root has played 32 T20I matches and scored 893 runs at 35.72.
England's Joe Root has played 32 T20I matches and scored 893 runs at 35.72.

Root and several other players were rested from the five-match T20 series against New Zealand last month.

Dawid Malan scored a spectacular century against the Kiwis in Napier and played a couple of other high-velocity innings. Malan takes the place of Root while the likes of Joe Denly, Jason Roy and Jonny Bairstow are also chosen ahead of him.

Root insists he wants to represent England in all formats, but he will struggle to force his way back into contention before the Twenty20 World Cup in Australia next October and November.

 

Some members of England's management will be pleased that Root's workload is being reduced because it avoids the danger of burn out.

"These squads have been selected with an eye on the T20 World Cup in 2020," chief selector Ed Smith said.

"We want to expand the pool of players who can perform successfully for England while also helping the team peak for major tournaments."

Dawid Malan scored a remarkable T20I century against New Zealand last month.
Dawid Malan scored a remarkable T20I century against New Zealand last month.

Moeen Ali, who rejected England's pleas to make himself available for the four-Test series against the Proteas, returns in both the 50-over and T20 squads.

Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer, Mark Wood and Jos Buttler are rested from the three 50-over matches - which means Bairstow will keep wicket - but return for the T20s.

Hampshire batsman James Vince and Kent's Sam Billings are among those omitted to accommodate the returning stars and it might be the duo have played their last white-ball matches for England.

Originally published in The Sun and republished with permission