Tymal Mills included in England T20 World Cup squad but Ben Stokes remains unavailable
England have named their 15-man preliminary squad for this autumn's T20 World Cup in the UAE; fast bowler Tymal Mills is included after more than four years out of the side; Ben Stokes remains unavailable as he continues indefinite break from cricket to prioritise his mental wellbeing
By Sam Drury
Last Updated: 09/09/21 6:33pm
England have included left-arm fast bowler Tymal Mills in their 15-man preliminary squad for the T20 World Cup but Ben Stokes remains unavailable for selection.
Mills, 29, played the last of his four T20 internationals to date in February 2017 but in the absence of the injured Jofra Archer, his brilliant form for Sussex in the Vitality Blast and Southern Brave in The Hundred has earned him a recall for the tournament in the UAE.
Chris Woakes, who made his first T20I appearance in over five years in June, also makes the squad with Tom Curran, a regular in the shortest format over the past four years, having to settle for a spot as one of three travelling reserves.
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Stokes was not available for selection and continues to take an indefinite break from all cricket to prioritise his mental wellbeing.
Mills told Sky Sports News: "I am really pleased and counting down the days until we fly out.
"I kept doing interviews throughout the year talking about the potential of getting back in the squad after [captain] Eoin Morgan said I was in with a shout.
"I always said when I am fit and firing, I back myself and that I think I am good enough to get back to that level so it was just a case of staying fit and going out and proving that."
Tymal has been performing well for two or three years not just one. He can bowl really quickly, he is left arm, has a great slower ball so he has the skills to be really successful. He is a good addition to the squad and everybody will be delighted to have him back.
Mark Wood on Tymal Mills
England head coach Chris Silverwood said: "We are excited about the prospect of challenging to win the ICC T20 World Cup.
"I believe we have selected a squad that covers all bases and has the depth to be successful in what is expected to be a very competitive tournament featuring the best players in the world.
"Tymal Mills deserves his inclusion and has demonstrated over the past couple of years, but particularly this summer that he has all skills to succeed at this level.
"His exceptional pace is a standout, and the way he has spearheaded Sussex and Southern Brave's respective attacks in the short-form game has shown that he relishes the pressures of the big stage.
"He will add variety to our bowling unit, and we can't wait to see him play in a major international tournament."
We just want Ben to get better. Hopefully he can look after himself first and the cricket will then come whenever he is ready.
Mark Wood on Ben Stokes
Having missed out on selection for England's ultimately triumphant 50-over World Cup campaign in 2019 following Archer's emergence, David Willey provides one of three left-arm seam options for Eoin Morgan alongside Mills and Sam Curran.
Liam Livingstone's exceptional white-ball form, both for England and domestically, has made him a shoo-in, when just months ago his place in the squad would have been far from guaranteed.
In Stokes' absence, he is likely to start the tournament as England's No 6, with Sam Billings providing competition.
However, there is no place in the squad or the reserves for Livingstone's Lancashire team-mate Matt Parkinson. The leg-spinner impressed during the ODI and T20I series against Pakistan earlier in the summer but Liam Dawson is preferred as spin back-up to Adil Rashid and Moeen Ali and takes his place among the reserves.
England do not have to formally finalise their squad until October 10 and begin their campaign against West Indies, a repeat of the 2016 final, on October 23.
England squad in full: Eoin Morgan (Middlesex, captain), Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), Jonathan Bairstow (Yorkshire), Sam Billings (Kent), Jos Buttler (Lancashire), Sam Curran (Surrey), Chris Jordan (Sussex), Liam Livingstone (Lancashire), Dawid Malan (Yorkshire), Tymal Mills (Sussex), Adil Rashid (Yorkshire), Jason Roy (Surrey), David Willey (Yorkshire), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire), Mark Wood (Durham)
Travelling reserves: Tom Curran (Surrey), Liam Dawson (Hampshire), James Vince (Hampshire)