Durham’s Mark Wood gets England contract

Mark Wood
Mark Wood

Durham bowler Mark Wood has earned his first central contract with England.

The 25-year-old Durham paceman only made his Test debut against New Zealand in May but went on to take 10 wickets in four Ashes matches as England claimed the urn with a 3-2 victory over Australia.

Limited-overs captain Eoin Morgan is the other newcomer in the 11 to have been awarded a central contract after guiding England to a one-day series success over the Kiwis before smashing three half-centuries in the 3-2 series loss to the World Cup-winning Aussies.

Gary Ballance, Chris Woakes and fellow all-rounder Chris Jordan have all lost their central contracts but have been retained on incremental contracts for the 2015-16 season.

Yorkshireman Ballance began the Ashes batting at three but paid for the price for the resounding defeat at Lord’s while Woakes suffered a knee injury that ruled him out of a large portion of the season at the start of the summer.

Yorkshire duo Jonny Bairstow and Adil Rashid, and Nottinghamshire’s James Taylor, all have incremental contracts having starred with the white ball over the past few months.

“We congratulate Mark Wood on winning a central contract for the first time,” said director of cricket Andrew Strauss.

“This award reflects his excellent performances for England this summer and our expectation that he will have a role to play in all three formats of the international game over the next 12 months.

“Eoin Morgan’s award reflects his status as captain of our limited-overs teams and the wider importance we place on white-ball cricket as we prepare for a busy period of T20 and one-day international cricket over the next 12 months including the World T20 tournament in India next year.”

England travel to the United Arab Emirates later this month to face Pakistan in a three-Test series before facing the same opponents in four one-day internationals and three Twenty20 games over the autumn.

They then tour South Africa before heading to the World Twenty20 in India and welcome Sri Lanka and Pakistan to England next summer.

England’s centrally-contracted players for 2015-16: Moeen Ali (Worcestershire), James Anderson (Lancashire), Ian Bell (Warwickshire), Stuart Broad (Nottinghamshire), Jos Buttler (Lancashire), Alastair Cook (Essex), Steven Finn (Middlesex), Eoin Morgan (Middlesex), Joe Root (Yorkshire), Ben Stokes (Durham), Mark Wood (Durham)

Incremental contracts: Jonny Bairstow (Yorkshire), Gary Ballance (Yorkshire), Alex Hales (Nottinghamshire), Chris Jordan (Sussex), Liam Plunkett (Yorkshire), Adil Rashid (Yorkshire), Chris Woakes (Warwickshire), James Taylor (Nottinghamshire)