By Andy Sambidge
Andrew Strauss to again lead England for the series against Pakistan starting in Jan
England on Friday announced a 16-man Test squad for the series against Pakistan in the UAE commencing next month.
Test captain Andrew Strauss will again lead the squad in what will be England's first Test series since being crowned the number one Test team in August.
A number of players will be returning to the Test squad from injury, including Stuart Broad, Eoin Morgan (both shoulder) and Chris Tremlett (back), as England face their first Test tour since retaining the Ashes in Australia last winter.
National selector Geoff Miller said: "This is an important series given it is our first Test series since hosting India in August this year and we expect a stern challenge against a Pakistan side that will be accustomed to playing in the UAE.
"We believe we've selected a very strong squad... We've been very pleased with the preparations undertaken by a number of players during what continues to be a lengthy break from international cricket."
Steven Davies will deputise as wicketkeeper to Matt Prior while Monty Panesar, who has been playing cricket in Sydney recently, has been selected as the second spin option along with Graeme Swann.
"Monty's selection comes off the back of a strong domestic season with Sussex and with the potentially spin-friendly conditions of Dubai and Abu Dhabi in mind," added Miller.
The full England squad: Andrew Strauss, James Anderson, Ian Bell, Ravi Bopara, Tim Bresnan, Stuart Broad, Alastair Cook, Steven Davies, Steven Finn, Eoin Morgan, Monty Panesar, Kevin Pietersen, Matt Prior, Graeme Swann, Chris Tremlett, Jonathan Trott.For all the latest sports news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.