England captain Joe Root set to bat at number three in the West Indies

England have opted to drop openers Rory Burns and Haseeb Hameed and number three Dawid Malan for next month’s tour of the West Indies, leaving the way clear for Root to step up from four.

Sir Andrew Strauss, who is interim managing director of England men's cricket, caretaker head coach Paul Collingwood and lead scout James Taylor made the call to discard the trio for the three Tests in the Caribbean following the debacle Down Under.

And Strauss confirmed Root had asked to move up the order.

"One of the first things that Joe Root said in the selection meeting was that he's very keen to bat three going forward," he said.

"I just feel like he wants to take responsibility and he's done that consistently with the bat over the last 18 months or so, over his entire career really.

"And he recognises that, if the top order don't lay the foundations it makes it very difficult for those coming in in the middle order, and he can help us with that."

James Anderson and Stuart Broad were the most high profile of the eight players dropped from the Ashes, with Strauss believing the decision to omit the duo will help England develop.

"It was a very hard conversation (with them). All I can say is I hope they understood the thinking behind it and what we're trying to achieve here and also that they got the message very strongly that this isn't the end for them.

"We want them fired up and ready to go in the summer and putting their names forward for selection.

Strauss did not give any assurances to Jos Buttler, who was left out having not passed fifty in any of his last 16 Test innings.

Ben Foakes will be given the chance to stake a claim behind the stumps having lost his place in the XI after the last tour of the West Indies in 2019.

Jos Buttler

"Jos was available for selection," Strauss revealed after the wicketkeeper left Australia early with a finger injury.

"He has struggled a little bit with performance over the last 12 months or so and we've got a keeper-batter (Foakes) waiting in the wings who I think is widely acknowledged as the or one of the best keepers in the world and a very good batsman in his own right, and his record suggests that both for England and for Surrey.

"He's waited patiently in the wings and he fully deserves his chance."

READ MORE: Michael Vaughan backs England’s decision to drop James Anderson and Stuart Broad

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