England duo earn recalls

21 February 2019 07:19:50 EST
Sam Billings has been handed another chance to shine.

Indian Premier League-bound duo Ben Stokes and Joe Buttler will miss the Twenty20 series against West Indies as England look to provide them with a break in a busy calendar.

The Rajasthan Royals players will sit out the three matches - the opener in St Lucia followed by two in St Kitts.

Jason Roy, the hero of England's record one-day international chase versus the West Indians in Barbados on Wednesday, will also be unavailable for the games between 5th and 10th March due to the birth of his first child.

The absences have led to recalls for England Lions captain Sam Billings and David Malan, of Middlesex, who both last featured at full international level for England on the limited-overs tour of Australasia 12 months ago.

Stokes, Buttler and Roy will return to the UK immediately after the last of the five ODIs on 2nd March.

The IPL begins on 23rd March, with the England contingent also involved in the World Cup available for around five weeks.

While Billings made a stunning start to his short-format career and has been an undoubted success at the IPL, he has only one half-century in the format at international level - the 53 he crashed to inspire a 14-run win over Pakistan in Dubai in November 2015.

Middlesex captain Malan, meanwhile, has been highly successful whenever given an opportunity and has been left on the outer this past year despite a record of four 50s in five appearances.

The Rajasthan Royals are 50/1 to win the IPL, while England can be backed at 3/10 to emerge victorious in the ODI series against West Indies.

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