Knocks of 149 and 51 in India's defeat to England in the first Test at Edgbaston have taken him above the former Australia captain, still banned from global cricket over his role in the ball-tampering scandal on the tour of South Africa in March. He also twice dropped Kohli in the slips before the India skipper had got to three figures in his first-innings 149 - the star batsman's maiden Test century in England. Dawid Malan failed to make big and scored just 28 runs in the first test and this poor performance lead to an exit of the player from the squad. The Durham all-rounder is absent for the second Test while he attends Bristol Crown Court on a charge of affray.
Pope has only played 15 first class games but has already struck 1012 runs at an average of 63.25, including four centuries, and is in prime position to slot in alongside captain Joe Root at number four.
It is another positive move by new national selector Ed Smith who has made quite an impression so far in selecting the likes of Jos Buttler and 20-year-olds in Dominic Bess and man of the match at Edgbaston in Sam Curran and the recalled Adil Rashid for Test cricket this season.
Pope was also give a peek at Test preparations when England invited him to Lord's to spend time with the squad before the start of the two-match series against Pakistan in May. He also made an unbeaten fifty for the second-string England Lions in a 253-run win over India A in a first-class fixture at Worcester last month.
He said: "Dawid has not found his best rhythm this season, and it may be that his game is better suited to overseas conditions". Fast bowler Chris Woakes, who was out of the England squad due to injury, has been called back to replace Stokes.
The 20-year-old Ollie Pope has started his first-class career very brilliantly.
"The selection panel believe Ollie's performances and character suggest he is well suited to worldwide cricket". In his tweet, he also joked that the selectors had "finally" seen his tweets and made the right decision to drop him, adding a subsequent hashtag that said, "Was playing for his good looks".
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