Ashes: Australia's Scott Boland handed debut; England make four changes
England, on Saturday, made four changes to their playing XI for the Boxing Day Test, starting December 26. They have roped in Jonny Bairstow, Jack Leach, Zak Crawley, and Mark Wood. Meanwhile, Scott Boland is set to make his Test debut for Australia. He will become only the second Indigenous male player (the first being Jason Gillespie) to wear the Baggy Green cap.
- The Boxing Day Test is played on December 26, a day after Christmas, and cricket matches on this day hold a significant meaning.
- With England 0-2 down in Ashes, the match has become all the more important as it is a do or die fixture for the tourists.
- England lost the series opener by nine wickets before losing the Day/Night Test by 275 runs.
Jack Leach, Zak Crawley, Mark Wood, and Jonny Bairstow have been added to England's side for the third Test. They will replace Stuart Broad, Rory Burns, Chris Woakes, and Ollie Pope in the Playing XI. Broad and Woakes have five wickets between them so far while Pope and Burns have managed to muster 48 and 51 runs respectively in the first two Tests.
In another development, pacer Scott Boland has been added to Australia's Playing XI. He has become only the second Indigenous men's player to receive the Baggy Green. Boland has a family link to the Gulidjan tribe through his maternal grandfather. Among women, Ash Gardner and Faith Thomas are on the list. Boland has played 14 ODIs and three T20Is, taking 19 wickets in total.
Pat Cummins, who missed the second Test after coming in close contact with a COVID-19 positive person, has returned. Seamer Michael Neser will go out to make way for his captain. Josh Hazlewood misses out with a side strain. Jhye Richardson has been rested, with Boland replacing him. Notably, Richardson bagged a fifer in the second innings of the Adelaide Test.
England: Haseeb Hameed, Zak Crawley, Dawid Malan, Joe Root (captain), Ben Stokes, Jonny Bairstow, Jos Buttler, Mark Wood, Ollie Robinson, Jack Leach, Jimmy Anderson. Australia: David Warner, Marcus Harris, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Cameron Green, Alex Carey, Pat Cummins (captain), Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Scott Boland.