Jack Leach keeps England place for second Test after recovering from concussion

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Jack Leach has retained his place against New Zealand (Jason O’Brien/PA) (PA Wire)
Jack Leach has retained his place against New Zealand (Jason O’Brien/PA) (PA Wire)

Jack Leach has retained his place for England’s second LV= Insurance Test against New Zealand after his return from concussion.

Leach takes his place in an unchanged XI, having missed the majority of the five-wicket win at Lord’s following a freak injury in the field on day one.

He was replaced by Matt Parkinson, England’s first ever concussion substitute, but has been cleared to take the field on Friday at Trent Bridge.

Yorkshire batter Harry Brook and Somerset seamer Craig Overton miss out once again.

Leach was playing his first home Test since 2019 when he took a nasty tumble chasing a ball to the boundary in the opening session of last week’s series opener.

He was later removed from the match after experiencing concussion symptoms, with Parkinson driving down from Manchester to make his Test debut as a replacement.

He took one wicket, dismissing tailender Tim Southee, but did not do enough to upset the existing pecking order.

Leach has been following a graduated return to play protocol, bowling in the middle without a batter on Wednesday before taking a full part in nets on the eve of the match.

One player who did seize his chance at Lord's was young Durham seamer Matthew Potts, who claimed seven wickets on his debut.

Ben Stokes has called for patience regarding the 23-year-old but hopes Potts can make a similar impact at Trent Bridge.

England captain Stokes told Sky Sports: "The way that he started last week was obviously amazing.

"It was pretty much a dream debut for him but I think the most important thing from a senior player point of view, and even for the coaches, is making sure that he keeps improving. And, if things don't go his way this week, it's not the be-all and end-all.

"But he's a fantastic competitor, that's why he got the opportunity to play.

"I obviously had to use him in a slightly different role because he normally takes the new ball for Durham, but he came on and I think he took a wicket three or four times in his first over when I asked him to do it, so I'll be looking to use him in the same way, to come in and affect the game and hopefully try and take a wicket when we need one."

Stokes expects another close battle, adding: "We're very evenly matched, especially in English conditions.

"Any overhead (cover) suits both our bowling attacks. We know that every time we go up against New Zealand it's never an easy ride. The game pretty much went to the wire until day four and we don't expect anything less."

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