Due to a string of back spasms, the 2019 World Cup victor missed all four of England’s one-day international matches against New Zealand. In his place, Dawid Malan staked a claim as the team’s starting opener. After playing a string of noteworthy innings in the meantime, Brook, who wasn’t included in the provisional 15 named in August, has been added to the team.
England has been worried about Roy’s form for a while, though his centuries in South Africa and Bangladesh earlier this year helped to ease their concerns. His status as one of England’s most crucial players had already been questioned after the victorious team decided against including the explosive opener in the 2022 T20 World Cup squad.
Roy struggled for form during the Hundred, and fitness issues meant he was unable to shore up his place against New Zealand. Malan, opening in his absence, made two half-centuries and a century as England won 3-1, pencilling in his name to open alongside Jonny Bairstow in England’s first-choice World Cup XI.
That left the decision over the identity of England’s spare batter as being between Brook and Roy. While Roy is an England great in the format, with an average just shy of 40 and a strike-rate above 100 in ODIs, Brook is rated as one of the most exciting young batting talents in world cricket. Brook made just 37 runs in his three ODI innings against New Zealand, but had earlier demonstrated his worth with a succession of pyrotechnic knocks in The Hundred and in England’s T20I series draw against the Black Caps.
England’s 2023 Cricket World Cup squad: Jos Buttler (c), Jonny Bairstow, Joe Root, Dawid Malan, Ben Stokes, Harry Brook, Liam Livingstone, Moeen Ali, Adil Rashid, Mark Wood, Reece Topley, Chris Woakes, Gus Atkinson, David Willey, Sam Curran.