These six players – Saqib Mahmood, George Garton, Tymal Mills, Sam Billings, Reece Topley and James Vince – will go back to England before the alternate T20I squad – missing those involved with the Ashes tour – travels to Barbados on January 15 for the T20I series starting a week later.
The Ashes gets over on January 18 but keeping in workloads and the bubble fatigue amid the COVID-19 regulations, as well as the busy calendar. The selectors have opted not to force on the Test squad members a super quick turnaround and mixing of the format.
The Test squad led by Joe Root will anyway travel to West Indies in March for a three-Test series part of the new World Test Championship cycle spanning 2021-23.
Apart from those players involved with the Ashes, head coach Chris Silverwood will also take a break during the WI T20Is.
In Silverwood’s absence, former skipper Paul Collingwood will take over the side, while ex opener Marcus Trescothick plays assistant to the interim head coach. Collingwood was with the Ashes touring party until close to Christmas eve before leaving for home and has previously also overseen head coach’s assignments.
To help Collingwood and Trescothick, England will have three additional interim coaches, the posts of whom the ECB had advertised for recently with the Barbados T20Is in mind.
BBL teams were made aware of the early departure of their English T20I picks when the three lions selected their squad on December 23.
Billings and Mahmood play for Sydney Thunder, Garton for Adelaide Strikers, Topley for Melbourne Renegades while Mills and Vince represent Perth Scorchers and Sydney Sixers, respectively.
The protocols designed for the safety of the West Indies tour also played a part in England players’ early departure from the BBL 2021-22. The T20I series will have matches played at the Kensington Oval on January 22, 23, 26, 29 and 30.