England will leave it until Wednesday morning, when the First Test against Pakistan at Emirates Old Trafford begins, to make a decision on whether Ben Stokes will play as a specialist batsman or all-rounder.
Stokes has been nursing a quad injury since the Second Test against West Indies, when he earned man-of-the-match honours for a remarkable all-round display.
He played the Third Test of that series as a specialist batsman, with no3 Zak Crawley dropped to accommodate an extra pace bowling option.
Stokes bowled in the middle and the nets at Old Trafford on Monday, but rain on Tuesday morning meant England were forced to train indoors and he was unable to prove his full fitness.
Captain Joe Root says England will wait until the morning to make a final call on whether to recall Crawley, but it seems likeliest that Stokes will play as a specialist batsman once more.
That would allow England to pick one of their quicker bowlers, Jofra Archer or Mark Wood, alongside James Anderson, Stuart Broad and Chris Woakes.
“We still need to know a little bit more about where Ben’s at,” said Root. “Because of the weather today unfortunately he wasn’t able to bowl outside so we will probably have to wait on that tonight and make a decision in the morning.
"What we have got with that squad of players is a number of different options, everything to cover the conditions and the pitch, whatever that throws at us it feels like we will have an answer.
"It’s a fantastic position [to be in]. We were forced into making a slight change in terms of the balance of the side with Ben unable to bowl in the last game, to see how well that worked, to know that works and that we have had success with it does fill everyone with a lot of confidence.
“Of course Ben being able to do everything that he can do is huge for this team and it shows how pivotal he is really in terms of the balance of the side.
"But if he’s not fit we have other options and different ways we can go, and a number of guys that are putting I fantastic performances, especially our seamers.
“In terms of selection I couldn’t be happier to have so many headaches, to be honest. For us as a side to have so much strength in depth is really pleasing and long may that continue.”
England have lost the first Test in each of their last five series, and eight in the last 10 – something Root is desperate to put right, especially as his side are coming straight off three Test matches.
“We have a big focus on starting well this week,” he said.
“We are all very aware that in previous series we have not got off to the best starts and we have been one-nil down, so the focus this time is trying to get a win early on and trying to drive the series from there.
“It is something we want to get right this week. It is disappointing and it always feels like hard work when you are behind in the series and we want to make sure we start well this time around.
"Fortunately we have three games under our belt coming into this. We played some really good cricket in the last two so guys are up to speed. We are familiar with the rhythm of Test cricket too so there is no excuse going into this week.”