England opt to bat against West Indies

CHENNAI: England skipper Andrew Strauss won the toss and elected to bat first in Thursday’s must-win World Cup Group B match against the West Indies.

England made three changes, including one enforced by injury to fast bowler Ajmal Shazhad who was ruled out of the tournament with a hamstring injury.

Chris Tremlett replaced out-of-form paceman Jimmy Anderson, James Tredwell for Shahzad and Luke Wright was given his World Cup debut in place of the experienced Paul Collingwood.

Explosive opener Chris Gayle returned form injury for the West Indies in place of Shivnarine Chanderpaul, while legspinner Devendra Bishoo was given his World Cup debut as a replacement for Nikita Miller.

After upset losses to Bangladesh and Ireland, England — already depleted with the loss of Kevin Pietersen and Stuart Broad with injuries — will be eliminated in the group stage unless it can beat the West Indies.


England: Andrew Strauss, Matt Prior, Jonathan Trott, Ian Bell, Eion Morgan, Ravi Bopara, Luke Wright, Tim Bresnan, Graeme Swann, James Tredwell, Chris Tremlett.

West Indies: Chris Gayle, Devon Smith, Darren Bravo, Ramnaresh Sarwan, Kieron Pollard, Devon Thomas, Darren Sammy (captain), Andre Russell, Sulieman Benn, Devendra Bishoo, Kemar Roach.

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