Star England batsman Harry Brook has withdrawn from the upcoming 5-Test series in India.
At the moment, it is said that he will miss the entire series, though there remains a slim chance of him returning in the latter part of the series.
Why has Harry Brook pulled out from the Test series against India? Will he return?
On January 21, four days out from the first Test in Hyderabad, the ECB announced that Harry Brook would return to England “with immediate effect for personal reasons”. It is not certain -and looks unlikely- whether he will come back to feature in the latter part of the series.
The ECB said in their statement, “The Brook family respectfully requests privacy during this time. In light of this, the ECB and the family kindly request the media and the public to respect their wish for privacy and refrain from intruding on their private space.”
The England selectors, headed by Managing Director Rob Key, have named all-rounder Dan Lawrence as the replacement for Harry Brook. A middle-order batsman and a right-arm off-spinner, Lawrence is currently in the UAE for the ILT20 tournament, but the ECB confirmed that he would arrive in India by Monday. Lawrence has 11 Tests under his belt, played between January 2021 and March 2022.
The England team will arrive in India on Sunday from Dubai, where they had been engaging in a training camp for the past 10 days. However, Harry Brook will not be part of the contingent arriving in India and will fly to the UK.
Brook, who made his Test debut in September 2022, has been a crucial part of the Bazball England team under Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum. The 24-year-old averages 62 in 12 Tests and has notched up 4 centuries. His strike rate of 91 has been, combined with his average, suggests he has been a key cog in the Bazball approach adopted by the Three Lions.
Brook’s absence will likely lead to Ben Foakes getting into the playing XI and taking the gloves from Jonny Bairstow.
The first Test will be played from January 25 in Hyderabad.