Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Cricket: INDIA AWAITS; Plunkett and Davies Given Squad Spots

Newspaper article Evening Gazette (Middlesbrough, England)

Cricket: INDIA AWAITS; Plunkett and Davies Given Squad Spots

Article excerpt

TEESSIDE duo Liam Plunkett and Mark Davies are set to spend the build up to Christmas in the sub-Continent.

The two Durham stars, who were celebrating Durham's County Championship success last night, are named in the England performance squad which will shadow the full England tour of India.

Middlesbrough-born Plunkett, 23, who has already got nine full caps under his belt and 27 one day international appearances, will be looking to get among the wickets regularly and stay in contention should any of the 'first team' regulars break down.

Stockton-born Davies has been rewarded for his return to full form this season, including taking a career best 8-24 for Durham against Hampshire at Basingstoke.

Middlesex batsman David Malan, 21, who came to prominence with a televised hundred in a 20-over contest against a Lancashire side including Andrew Flintoff earlier this summer, is also included in the performance squad.

England's 15-man performance squad: Bresnan (Yorks), M Davies (Durham), S M Davies (wkt, Worcs), Denly (Kent), Joseph (Kent), Key (Kent) Khan (Kent), Mahmood (Lanc), Malan (Middx), Morgan (Middx), Moore (Worcs), Plunkett (Durham), Rashid (Yorks), Rayner (Sussex), Trott (Warwicks).

Owais Shah will get the chance to put further pressure on Michael Vaughan's Test career after he was given a slot on England's full tour of India.

Shah, 29, became the beneficiary of the decision to give former captain Vaughan a rest period and is part of the 15-man party which face India in two Tests this December.

Although heading out as reserve batsman, Shah will view this as a good opportunity - he stepped in for an ill Alastair Cook to hit 88 on debut in Mumbai two years ago - to further pressurise Vaughan.

England's selectors, who handed the 33-year-old a central contract just three weeks ago, are yet to decide where in the world to dispatch him before Christmas and he could yet join the performance squad shadowing the full tour. …

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