With the World Cup and the Ashes in 2019, ODI and Test cricket took centre stage for England. But with the ICC T20 World Cup taking place in October this year, the focus will be turned to the shortest format of the international game.
With three T20 series to be played this year, one in South Africa and two at home against Australia and Pakistan, players will be desperate to make their mark before the Three Lions travel to Australia for this Autumn’s tournament.
A lot is on the line this year in this format and with that in mind, here are the players that will be looking to impress in the upcoming series…
1. Mark Wood
With a stress fracture to Jofra Archer’s elbow, the expectation on Mark Wood has increased this series as one of the few members of England’s attack that can bowl at 90mph plus.
A part of the ODI World Cup winning team in 2019, Wood impressed during the Test series on his comeback from injury (taking 12 wickets at an average of 13.58) and will look to kick on this series and cement his place in the team for the year ahead.
What’s more, Wood showed in the Test series just how dangerous with the bat he is (hitting 98 runs at an average of 47.50 and a strike rate of 128.37), and his ballistic displays could come in handy at the end of an innings in the upcoming series.
2. Matt Parkinson
The young leg-spinner has been included in squads for all three formats on the South Africa tour but has not had a huge amount of opportunities to prove his worth after the second ODI was rained off.
T20 is arguably the format the 23-year-old is most suited to and after his impressive performances in New Zealand, where he finished with combined figures of 5-61 from his two games, he will be looking to show how dangerous a bowler he can be.
Missed our list of potential replacements for Jofra Archer? Take a look here.
3. Dawid Malan
Despite not featuring in the ODI series against South Africa, the Yorkshire-bound Dawid Malan is a formidable force in T20 cricket.
In 11 matches for England, he has an average of 57.25, which includes five 50s and one century.
His last appearance for England was during the series in New Zealand in late 2019 where he scored 103* off 51 balls in Napier, an innings which included 13 sixes, and in doing so became only the second Englishman to score a T20 ton.
He will want to build on his form in New Zealand and cement a place in the side for what looks a promising year for both him and the England team.