Mohammed Shami expected to play a role in England Tests

India's ace fast bowler Mohammed Shami is setting his sights on a return to competitive cricket during the upcoming five-Test series against England, commencing on January 25. 

Shami, who has been sidelined since the 2023 ODI World Cup final due to an ankle injury, expressed confidence in his recovery process and readiness to make a comeback in the big home series against England, which is a part of the ICC World Test Championship.

Best of Rohit Sharma in T20Is

In a recent interview with Times of India, Shami shared his optimism regarding his rehabilitation, stating, “My rehabilitation is well on track, and the medical experts at NCA are happy with my progress.” He acknowledged some residual stiffness in his ankle but remains unfazed, adding, “I have started my training sessions, and I believe I will be able to make a comeback in the England series.”

Mohammed Shami aims for Test comeback soon

Shami was initially included in India's Test squad for the two matches in South Africa, contingent upon his fitness. However, he did not accompany the team and was subsequently withdrawn from the series, which India eventually drew 1-1 after a thrilling win in the second Test at Cape Town. 

Speaking about India's performance in South Africa, Shami was elated and stated that India “did well” in the second Test, hailing the bowling performance in his absence as “brilliant”. 

The comeback by India to level the series was a huge boost for them ahead of the home Tests against India. Unfortunately Shami missed the series because of injury, but with him set to come back to competitive cricket, we can expect him to be back in action against England, although probably not in the first two Tests.

Shami's absence from India's T20I squad for the matches against Afghanistan on January 11, 14, and 17 further underlined the focus on his rehabilitation and readiness for the longer format of the game, where he’s a key cog in India’s setup.

Virat Kohli defeats global icon to win prestigious award

The fast bowler, who recently received the prestigious Arjuna Award in Delhi on January 9, was the standout performer at the 2023 ODI World Cup. He emerged as the tournament's highest wicket-taker, claiming an impressive 24 wickets in just seven games at an astonishing average of 10.70 and a remarkable strike rate of 12.20.

Mohammed Shami
Photo by Icon sport

India's upcoming Test series against England will be a significant challenge for Shami and the team. The five Tests are scheduled to take place in Hyderabad (Jan 25-29), Visakhapatnam (Feb 2-6), Rajkot (Feb 15-19), Ranchi (Feb 23-27), and Dharamsala (Mar 7-11). Notably, this series is part of the ongoing World Test Championship cycle, where India currently holds the second position, trailing behind Australia.

Shami aims to play a pivotal role in India's quest for success in the upcoming Test series against England, which could be crucial for India’s bid to reach the World Test Championship final for the third successive time and probably win the title this time.


Rohit is an experienced cricket writer based in India