FORMER Worcestershire spin bowler Moeen Ali is said to be considering coming out of test cricket retirement to join the England squad for the upcoming Ashes Series.

Following the injury to spinner Jack Leach, the England coaching set-up and captain Ben Stokes are on the hunt for a replacement and 35-year-old Moeen is reportedly top of that list. 

Moeen, 35, has not played red-ball cricket since September 2021 but has found his name thrust back into the conversation after Leach was ruled out for the summer by a stress fracture in his lower back.

Worcester News: Jack Leach is sidelined by injury (PA)Jack Leach is sidelined by injury (PA) (Image: PA)

Reports suggest Moeen is seriously considering the approach from England head coach Brendon McCullum, with the first Ashes test now just over a week away.

England are not without slow bowling options, with Surrey’s Will Jacks, Leicestershire’s rising star Rehan Ahmed and Liam Dawson all offering different skills. However, none can match the experience of a seasoned Test player with 64 caps and 195 wickets under his belt.

Moeen is currently at Warwickshire after ending his 15-year stint with Worcestershire last summer. He made his second debut for his hometown club in this year's T20 Vitality Blast competition. 

This is not the first time McCullum has tried to bring Moeen out of retirement. He previously tried to tempt the all-rounder back into the fray for the historic tour of Pakistan but, after initially declaring himself open to the idea, Moeen ultimately decided to stick to limited-overs cricket.

Worcester News: Stuart Broad, left, says Moeen would fit into Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum’s philosophy (PA)Stuart Broad, left, says Moeen would fit into Ben Stokes and Brendon McCullum’s philosophy (PA) (Image: PA)

Now the same offer is back on the table in the form of one last shot at Australia. With the series getting underway at Moeen’s home ground of Edgbaston on June 16, time is short, but the England and Wales Cricket Board are unlikely to rush for a quicker verdict.

Stuart Broad, a contemporary of Moeen’s who has been revitalised by the set-up over the last year, can already see a neat fit.

He told Sky Sports: "We know Mo is a phenomenal cricketer and someone who would fit into Stokes and Baz’s philosophy beautifully.

"I don’t know if he’s being considered by the selectors or if he would consider red-ball cricket again, but he’s a mighty fine cricketer."

England have held off naming an addition to the squad, having originally expected to make an early call, leaving the ball in Moeen’s court.