Moeen Ali: Liam Livingstone likely to be ‘undercooked’ for T20 World Cup following ankle injury

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Liam Livingstone is likely to arrive at the T20 World Cup in Australia “undercooked” after his ankle injury, but should be fit to play in at least one warm-up game, Moeen Ali has said.

Livingstone was ruled out of England’s ongoing T20I series to Pakistan after suffering the injury during the Hundred and has been at Emirates Old Trafford over the past week to step up his rehabilitation.

He is expected to travel to Australia next week to link up with the rest of the England squad, who will fly there from Lahore on Monday after the seventh and final T20I against Pakistan. England will then play three matches against Australia and one official warm-up against Pakistan before starting their World Cup campaign against Afghanistan on October 22 in Perth.

“I know he’s speaking to Jos and I actually messaged him a couple of days ago to see how he was going,” Moeen said on Tuesday. “He said it’s getting there and he’s on the mend. Hopefully, in Australia, he’ll probably play the last warm-up game or something like that.

“When you do your ankle, it’s not easy. I’ve done mine at the IPL and once you’ve rolled it once, apparently it keeps rolling… you keep rolling it throughout your career so you’ve got to be really careful. I’ve done mine twice and I think he’s done his three times now.

“We’re hoping that he’s ready. He might be a little bit undercooked but he’ll pick it up quickly and it’s actually not been a bad thing for him to have a bit of a break from cricket.”

Chris Jordan, who also missed the Pakistan tour through injury, is expected to be ready to play when he arrives in Australia at the start of next week. Last week, the splint came off the finger that he fractured during the Hundred and he has been training at The Kia Oval to prepare for the World Cup.
More immediately, Chris Woakes could make his first England appearance in any format since March on Wednesday night in Lahore after various injuries caused him to miss the home international summer.

“There’s a good chance,” Moeen said of Woakes’ prospects, “but we’ve not named a team to the boys so we are just waiting. He’s good. He is really looking forward to playing but he’s also been out for a long time, so he wants to make sure he’s completely ready.

“Until you play, you don’t know if you’re ready. But he is really confident, he’s happy and the medical team is happy with him, so we will definitely see him [in this series]. He is a big player for England… Woakesy is a great guy, great for the team.”

Richard Gleeson has also been passed fit for the rest of the series after a niggle restricted him to two overs in the first T20I in Karachi. Gleeson will be one of three travelling reserves for the World Cup, along with Liam Dawson and Tymal Mills.
Moeen, who has deputised as captain for the injured Jos Buttler during this series, said that he was happy with how England played in the Karachi leg of the tour, which finished level at 2-2 following Pakistan’s two-run win on Sunday.

“I’m just pleased with the way we are playing, with the young guys coming in and performing really well,” he said. “Speaking to Jos, he’s really pleased with the way things are going.

“When we lost in the summer, we were playing poorly. You are a bit more down about those results. It was a disappointing result the other night, but it was a great game of cricket. Okay, we lost, but I feel we are playing good cricket. We lost a lot of wickets in the powerplay but we managed to stay in the game until the very end.”

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