England name Stuart Broad vice-captain for New Zealand Tests
England have named Ben Stokes as their vice-captain in the absence of Ben Stokes for the upcoming Test series against New Zealand, the national team announced on social media on Tuesday.
England are set to host New Zealand in a two-match Test series, starting June 2. The first Test has been scheduled to be played at Lord's and the second game will be held at Edgbaston, Birmingham.
Stokes, who led his national side last year in the absence of Joe Root against West Indies, will miss the series due to the injury he picked up during his stint with Rajasthan Royals (RR) during the now-suspending Indian Premier League (IPL) last month. Jos Buttler has also been Root's deputy in the Tests in the past but the wicketkeeper-batsman has been rested following the IPL.
James Anderson, who is England's most experienced player in the Test squad, has also served as the national team's vice-captain in the longest format.
Meanwhile, Broad, who made his international debut in 2006, has led England in 27 Twenty20 and 3 ODIs between 2011 and 2014.
While England are set to be without three stars, Stokes, Buttler and Jofra Archer, Gloucestershire wicketkeeper-batsman James Bracey will make his debut in the first Test, England captain Root has confirmed. The 24-year-old 'keeper-batsman, who has been picked in the place of injured Ben Foakes, has averaged over 50 while batting in the top three for his county side.
Foakes slipped in Surrey's dressing room at the Oval and pulled a hamstring injury.
Moreover, spectators are expected to return to cricket stadiums in England, starting with the home series against the BlackCaps. Close to 7,000 fans will be allowed at the Lord's for the first Test in London. The limit is expected to increase for the second Test as the UK is on the verge of relaxing COVID-19 restrictions