England Women in the West Indies

Sciver returns after taking a mental health break at the start of September and, as ESPNcricinfo revealed last week, captain Knight is fit again after undergoing surgery to treat a hip injury she suffered in July which curtailed her home summer. Brunt is also back after being rested for India’s white-ball visit in September but is only part of the T20I squad.

Winfield-Hill, the top-order batter, was dropped during the 50-over World Cup in New Zealand at the start of the year, where England finished runners-up to Australia after a troubled start to the tournament.

She has not played a T20I for England since the group stage of the T20 World Cup in Australia in early 2020 but has been recalled to the squad for five T20Is in the Caribbean which will form a key part of England’s preparations for next year’s World Cup after a hugely impressive domestic season, including for Oval Invincibles in the Hundred. She was the Hundred’s fourth-highest run-scorer with 219 at 54.75 and with a strike rate of 136.02 after making the move south from Northern Superchargers, but earlier this month she was omitted from the ECB’s list of centrally contracted players for the coming year.

England opted to introduce a number of youngsters towards the end of former head coach Lisa Keightley’s tenure, which finished in September. The likes of Alice Capsey, Freya Kemp, Issy Wong and Lauren Bell thrived but England were left with a dearth of senior players, particularly after their failed home Commonwealth Games campaign.

England won the home three-match T20I series against India 2-1 but lost the ODIs 3-0 while wicketkeeper Amy Jones stood in as captain with Knight, Sciver, the regular vice-captain, and 37-year-old seamer Brunt on the sidelines.

Jon Lewis, appointed as Keightley’s successor last week following a stint as England’s men’s pace bowling coach, expressed his excitement at working with the squads.

“It’s great to have Heather, Nat and Katherine back in the group,” Lewis said. “The quality and experience they bring can only add huge value both on and off the field. We will manage Katherine back into competitive cricket with an eye on the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup in February.

“Equally, for Lauren, it’s pleasing to see a player go through a tough period and come back stronger, while demonstrating terrific form at domestic and franchise level. I have been particularly impressed with Lauren’s ability to put the bowlers under pressure and score at an impressive run rates in the powerplay.”

The 19 players selected will travel on November 29, with the four ODI players not selected in the T20I squad – Emma Lamb, Kate Cross, Alice Davidson-Richards and Tammy Beaumont, who lost her place in the shortest format for much of the English summer – returning home at the end of the three-match ODI series. Brunt, Winfield-Hill, Sarah Glenn and Issy Wong are only part of the T20I squad while Tash Farrant was unavailable for selection as she continues to recover from a stress fracture.

The tour consists of three ODIs for ICC Women’s Championship points in Antigua on December 4, 6 and 9 followed by one T20I on December 11 before four more in Barbados on December 14, 17, 18 and 22.

The T20I series represents the final chance for players to impress Lewis before selection for the upcoming T20 World Cup in South Africa, which starts on February 10.

ODI squads: Heather Knight (capt), Tammy Beaumont, Lauren Bell, Alice Capsey, Kate Cross, Alice Davidson-Richards, Freya Davies, Charlie Dean, Sophia Dunkley, Sophie Ecclestone, Amy Jones, Freya Kemp, Emma Lamb, Nat Sciver, Danni Wyatt

T20I squad: Heather Knight, Lauren Bell, Katherine Brunt, Alice Capsey, Freya Davies, Charlie Dean, Sophia Dunkley, Sophie Ecclestone, Sarah Glenn, Amy Jones, Freya Kemp, Nat Sciver, Lauren Winfield-Hill, Issy Wong, Danni Wyatt

Valkerie Baynes is a general editor at ESPNcricinfo

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