Tom Banton retained in squad after standing in for Dawid Malan during Sri Lanka ODIs
England have named an unchanged 16-player squad for the three-match ODI series against Pakistan, which gets underway in Cardiff on July 8.
“Potentially the Pakistan series could push us further,” Thorpe said. “We’ve been pleased with our own performances. We didn’t want any complacency to creep in. And because of the competition we have, the players want to put in good performances.”
“Sri Lanka have a decent group of players, there’s no doubt about that. I think they’ve been weakened more on their batting side than their bowling unit but I believe Pakistan will be a team that’s further ahead in terms of experience and how they’ll be able to challenge. It’ll probably be a tougher contest.”
One player who could come into the mix for the Bristol match is George Garton, the Sussex left-arm fast bowler. If selected, he will be making his England debut, three years after he was drafted into the Test squad as a replacement in the 2017-18 Ashes.
Liam Dawson, Hampshire’s left-arm-spinning allrounder, is another player who has yet to feature in either match so far, and could be set for his first England appearance since 2018, having been a non-playing reserve in the 2019 World Cup-winning squad.
England will name their squad for the T20I leg of the Pakistan series later this month, a series which will serve as an important pointer ahead of the T20 World Cup in the UAE and Oman this winter.
“I think it will be a very good series,” Moeen Ali said. “Pakistan are normally a very good side, they give us good games, and I think they’ll be a stronger opposition than Sri Lanka, which means you get more of a chance to bat and bowl as a player who’s down the order, for example, and hasn’t been bowling much.
“Definitely, they are one of the best [T20I] teams in the world, along with West Indies, India, Australia,’ he said. “I think Pakistan are our bogey-team in World Cups, they always seem to do really well against us, so we can’t take them lightly at all, they are a fantastic team with quality players.”
England ODI series vs Pakistan
1st ODI, Cardiff, July 8
2nd ODI, Lord’s, July 10
3rd ODI, Edgbaston, July 13