Magellan Ashes 2017-18

England dig deep for cover after Ball injury

Promising young left-armer becomes 19th player in England's Ashes squad after scans confirm Jake Ball has ligament damage

Dave Middleton

11 November 2017, 10:18 AM AEST

England have called up unheralded left-arm 20-year-old quick George Garton to their Ashes squad to cover the injury to Jake Ball – and help batsmen prepare for Australia spearhead Mitchell Starc.

Garton comes into the squad after seamer Jake Ball was confirmed to have right ankle ligament damage after collapsing in his delivery stride in his fourth over of the England team's tour match at the Adelaide Oval this week.

Ball had been in line to play the first Magellan Ashes Test at the Gabba on November 23 after impressing in the early stages of England's tour. Ball is now in doubt for next week's match against the Cricket Australia XI in Townsville, England's final hit out before the Test series starts.

Fast-tracked into England's pace programme, Garton is considered a highly promising prospect in English cricket which has a lack of fast left-armers.

Garton has taken 11 wickets in 12 domestic T20 matches // Getty
Garton has taken 11 wickets in 12 domestic T20 matches // Getty

In nine first-class appearances he has 23 wickets at 36.47, with a best return of 3-20 playing for Sussex in the County Championship's second division.

Just four months after making his debut in April 2016 Garton was elevated into the England Lions squad. He has been part of England's Pace Programme, which included a two-week training camp in South Africa earlier this year.

He was used as a net bowler by England during the norther summer and impressed some senior members of the team with his pace. 

Garton becomes the 19th player selected by England to their Ashes touring party with the first Test still 12 days away. Garton was part of the 17-man England Lions squad that was due to arrive in Australia in early next week and which will largely shadow the senior squad.

Ball fall sends scare through England camp

The England Lions party includes fast bowler Mark Wood, the most rapid bowler England have at their disposal, who had narrowly missed Ashes selection on his return from injury, and has again been overlooked for the senior squad.

Garton's call-up will help England's batsmen prepare for the searing left-arm pace of Mitchell Starc, who warmed up for the Ashes series with two hat-tricks in the one JLT Sheffield Shield match for the NSW Blues this week.

Watch Starc's two hat-tricks back-to-back

Starc also gave Australia captain Steve Smith a torrid time in the SCG nets on Friday as part of a final NSW Blues training session.

England's batting worries were exposed on Friday afternoon when they suffered a horror collapse of 7-45, as Simon Milenko and Gurinder Sandhu ran through the side.

The collapse was sparked by the dismissal of captain Joe Root, who was trapped leg before by Sandhu for one.

All England's second innings wickets to fall to the CA XI

England Test squad: Joe Root (c), Moeen Ali, James Anderson, Jonny Bairstow, Jake Ball, Gary Ballance, Stuart Broad, Alastair Cook, Mason Crane, Tom Curran, Ben Foakes, George Garton, Dawid Malan, Craig Overton, Ben Stokes, Mark Stoneman, James Vince, Chris Woakes.

2017-18 International Fixtures

Magellan Ashes Series

First Test Gabba, November 23-27. Buy tickets

Second Test Adelaide Oval, December 2-6 (Day-Night). Buy tickets

Third Test WACA Ground, December 14-18. Buy tickets

Fourth Test MCG, December 26-30. Buy tickets

Fifth Test SCG, January 4-8 (Pink Test). Buy tickets

ODI Series v England

First ODI MCG, January 14. Buy tickets

Second ODI Gabba, January 19. Buy tickets

Third ODI SCG, January 21. Buy tickets

Fourth ODI Adelaide Oval, January 26. Buy tickets

Fifth ODI Perth TBC, January 28. Join the ACF

Prime Minister's XI

PM's XI v England Manuka Oval, February 2. Buy tickets

T20 trans-Tasman Tri-Series

First T20I Australia v NZ, SCG, February 3. Buy tickets

Second T20I – Australia v England, Blundstone Arena, February 7. Buy tickets

Third T20I – Australia v England, MCG, February 10. Buy tickets

Fourth T20I – NZ v England, Wellington, February 14

Fifth T20I – NZ v Australia, Eden Park, February 16

Sixth T20I – NZ v England, Seddon Park, February 18

Final – TBC, Eden Park, February 21