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The fight for a place in England's ODI squad is firmly underway
  1. Cricket
  2. International Cricket

Which England ODI stars deserve a World Cup place?

England will head to India in October 2023 to defend the ODI World Cup trophy they claimed on home soil back in 2019.

It was their first ever 50-over title and after their T20 success in Australia this year, they are currently world champions in both white-ball formats.

After recent ODI results though - including the 3-0 series whitewash against Australia - there could be a number of changes to the squad for the next big limited-overs tournament.

What: World Cup 2023
Where: India
When: October - November 2023
How to watch: Sky Sports Cricket
Odds: India 12/5, England 3/1, Australia 4/1, New Zealand 7/1, Pakistan 7/1

England selectors facing tough calls

Former limited-overs star Luke Wright has recently been appointed as England men's selector, part of a change to the system by cricket managing director Rob Key.

Wright will join Key, performance director Mo Bobat and player ID lead David Court to make up the selection panel, which had been previously scrapped by Ashley Giles.

One of the main tasks for the selectors will be building up to the next ODI World Cup and whether new players deserve a chance to earn a place in the squad.

Test captain Ben Stokes decided to retire from the 50-over format last year, while Jos Buttler took over the white-ball captaincy from the departing Eoin Morgan.

Form in 50-over matches has not been great since the change in skipper, with England winning just two of their last eight ODI fixtures.

Roy decision looks likely

One of the first decisions for the new selection panel will surround the openers, with question marks over World Cup 2019 winner Jason Roy.

The 32-year-old was crucial to the hosts victory in 2019 but his form over the last six months will be a concern for coach Matthew Mott.

Roy, who has almost 4000 ODI runs to his name, has scored just one century since June 2019 and that came in a crushing win over the Netherlands.

In the recent three-match series against Australia, the opener scored just 39 runs in three innings and his position will now come under more scrutiny.

The selectors swapped between Phil Salt and Dawid Malan to open the batting alongside Roy, but they look more likely to keep Malan at three going forward.

Jonny Bairstow, when back to full fitness, is likely to take one of the top two spots but the other is likely to be up for grabs.

One name that will come into the equation is Alex Hales, after the 33-year-old shone in the T20 success and could be set for a 50-over recall.

Hales, who averages 37.79 with the bat in ODIs, has not played for England in a 50-over match since March 2019, but his penultimate innings saw him smash 82 against West Indies.

The opener also has an advantage of playing on Indian wickets in the IPL, which the selectors might feel will work in his favour at the World Cup.

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Vince and Billings stake a claim

There were not many players who shone for England in the ODI series defeat to the Aussies, but two of the middle order did enough to suggest they could feature in 2023.

James Vince has a ton and two half-centuries in his last five ODI innings and the selectors look likely to stick with him, although he could be pushed down the order if Joe Root decides to stick with the 50-over format.

Billings' position is less certain, with Bairstow capable of being the back-up wicket-keeper to Buttler, but he did show he's a useful option to have in the middle order.

Moeen Ali's tame performances in the Australian defeats is easily explained by post-T20 victory fatigue for a badly-timed ODI series. His all-round skills are likely to be utilised in India next year.

England wait on bowling injury progress

If Mark Wood and Jofra Archer are fit, then both pacemen are expected to be on the flight to India – but it is a big if at present.

Archer has struggled with a long-term elbow injury and hasn't played an ODI for England since September 2020. The selectors main hope is to get the 27-year-old fit for next summer's Ashes – for which England are 11/8 to win the series.

Wood played a key role in helping the T20 squad progress out of their group in Australia, but missed the last two matches due to fitness issues.

Reece Topley is another who will be looking to prove his fitness in the new year, having suffered ankle ligament damage prior to the World T20 tournament.

Olly Stone was the only paceman that made some sort of impact in the 3-0 series defeat Down Under, with the Nottinghamshire bowler taking 4-85 in the heavy defeat in the third ODI.

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