England v Pakistan: Alex Hales in line to partner skipper Alastair Cook as axe falls on opener Adam Lyth for UAE trip

Ross McLean
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Hales could replace Adam Lyth against Pakistan (Source: Getty)

Uncapped batsman Alex Hales is in contention to partner skipper Alastair Cook at the top of the order after being included in England’s 16-man Test squad to face Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates this autumn.

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Surrey all-rounder Zafar Ansari, who has scored more than 700 runs and taken 44 wickets this season, has also been included in the travelling party and will boost spin options alongside Moeen Ali and Adil Rashid.

A productive one-day campaign against Australia has earned Nottinghamshire’s James Taylor, whose last Test appearance came against South Africa in 2012, a recall for a series which begins in Abu Dhabi on 13 October.

The inclusion of Hales, who averages 52.11 in the County Championship this season, means there is no place for fellow opener Adam Lyth following an underwhelming Ashes series, while fellow Yorkshire batsman Gary Ballance has also been omitted.

All-rounder Ben Stokes has been rested from both limited-overs squads, to which Joe Root returns. Lancashire spinner Stephen Parry and seamer Chris Jordan are recalled to the T20 squad.

Cricket bosses have also confirmed the appointment of former one-day skipper Paul Collingwood and retired Sri Lanka great Mahela Jayawardene in consultancy roles.

Collingwood is set to focus his attention on white-ball cricket in the UAE, and will also work at next year’s World T20 in India, while Jayawardene will work with the Test batsmen until the end of the first Test against Pakistan.

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