England set to name first squad under new coach Peter Moores
A new era for the England cricket team begins on Thursday when new coach Peter Moores names his first squad.
Last Updated: 01/05/14 5:13pm
Moores and the revamped selection panel will name their squad to play Scotland in a one-day international on May 9, which is a warm-up game for the five-match series with Sri Lanka which begins 11 days later.
Moores, together with national selector James Whitaker and new appointees Angus Fraser and Mick Newell, has some tricky decisions to make and the make-up of the squad is difficult to predict.
But Moores will be keen to draw a line under a terrible six months for English cricket, with their 5-0 hammering in Australia and the World Twenty20 defeat to the Netherlands still fresh in the memory.
Captain Alastair Cook, deputy Eoin Morgan, Joe Root, Ian Bell and Ravi Bopara are near-certainties to fill five of the batting slots.
One or two more are potentially up for grabs with England set to name either a 13 or 14 man squad. Alex Hales, one of the few men to emerge from the World Twenty20 with his reputation enhanced - or at least intact - is one possibility, particularly if the selectors want Root to bat down the order rather than open. But he can't get a game with Nottinghamshire in four-day cricket at the moment.
Moeen Ali, who has once again been plundering runs in county cricket this season, is another and he has his improving spin bowling as another string to his bow.
Gary Ballance - in splendid form for Yorkshire - and Nottinghamshire duo Michael Lumb and James Taylor are further possibilities. The latter two are likely to have support from Nottinghamshire coach Newell, who may also push for a recall for Samit Patel.
But the selectors may have decided that the time has come for James Vince to be blooded. The Hampshire batsman is in fine nick, having scored two centuries already this season, and he has been one of the most prolific run-scorers in limited-overs county cricket for some time.
Jos Buttler is nailed on to take the gloves - presumably Moores is already a massive fan having signed him for Lancashire.
Stuart Broad is not yet fit but James Anderson - in decent form already this season for Lancashire - and Chris Jordan are likely to lead the attack.
There may be plenty of debate over the other seamers. Tim Bresnan is yet to play this season so is unlikely to be involved. Steve Finn has been taking wickets for fun for Middlesex - good news after his miserable experience in Australia.
But rather than risk throwing him back into international cricket so soon, the selectors may wish to see him continue his rehabilitation with his county.
Chris Woakes is a probable - he has not been scoring runs but he has been in the wickets for Warwickshire. Jack Brooks has had an eye-catching start to the season with Yorkshire and he could be in the frame.
The selectors are keen for a left-arm fast bowler to give them some variety, so Nottinghamshire's Harry Gurney, Essex star Tymal Mills or Warwickshire's Keith Barker may all be considered.
James Tredwell is in pole position to take the spin-bowling berth, despite being dropped by Kent from their four-day team.
There is little competition. Scott Borthwick and Simon Kerrigan may come into play in the Tests, but they are expensive with the white ball. The selectors are not blessed with many options for 50-over spinners - the retirement of Graeme Swann leaves the cupboard all-but bare.
Potential squad: Cook, Morgan, Bell, Root, Bopara, Moeen Ali, Ballance, Buttler, Anderson, Jordan, Tredwell, Woakes, Gurney
Sky Sports News will have full coverage of England's squad announcement on Thurday.