Anderson flies home to get fit for World Cup

James Anderson will return home from Australia in an attempt to ensure that he will be fit for the World Cup. The fast bowler was the pick of England's bowlers during the triangular one-day series before injuring his back in the team's defeat to New Zealand 11 days ago.

He has not played since then, but it was hoped that the 24-year-old would be fit to play in this morning's crucial match against Australia but, with the World Cup looming and uncertainty over England's squad growing, caution has been shown.

"I'm obviously gutted to be going home, but at the same time I can understand why," he said. "It is important for me to be fit to play a part in the World Cup.

"It is a precautionary measure to ensure that I am fit for the entire tournament. If I'm honest, I don't really feel any pain at the moment and if it was the World Cup final tomorrow I'd definitely play."

On his return to England, Anderson will be set a programme to get him fit for the tournament which starts in the Caribbean in early March. He is one of the few players that, fitness permitting, is certain of a place. His departure will affect England's slim chances of qualifying for the finals against Australia but it highlights his value.

Anderson sustained a stress fracture to his back during England's tour of India in 2006, an injury that prevented him from playing first-class cricket until the final few weeks of the summer. Anderson's selection for the Ashes came as a surprise but he appeared to be returning to his best form prior to the setback.

Michael Vaughan missed this morning's encounter, too, and there must be doubts over whether it is worthwhile playing him in Tuesday's game against New Zealand if England lose to Australia today. In an attempt to recover from the hamstring injury that has kept him out of England's last five matches, Vaughan could jeopardise his place in the World Cup. England are desperate to finish their tour of Australia off on a positive note but playing Vaughan is a risk they would be foolish to take.

Australia have reacted proudly to the criticism of sledging aimed at them by Lou Vincent, the New Zealand opening batsman. Vincent has scored 66 and 76 since replacing the recently retired Nathan Astle in the Black Caps side. Vincent said: "They think they are bigger than the game and it is about standing up to them, They hunt like a pack of dogs."

In reply Ricky Ponting, the Australian captain, said: "I want my guys to be ultra competitive. That's what it is like to play for Australia, and I'm sure it's the same for New Zealand. We've just played really hard, intensive cricket right through the summer. Everything we have done has been played within the spirit of the game and we've just been able to impose ourselves on the other teams.

"We try to create an uncomfortable environment in the field for the opposition - that's the best way to put it. We like them to feel under pressure when they come out to bat against us. It creates doubt."

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
Approved Food sell products past their sell-by dates at discounted prices
i100
Sport
Jonny Evans and Papiss Cisse come together
football
News
Life-changing: Simone de Beauvoir in 1947, two years before she wrote 'The Second Sex', credited as the starting point of second wave feminism
peopleHer seminal feminist polemic, The Second Sex, has been published in short-form to mark International Women's Day
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
The beat is on: Alfred Doda, Gjevat Kelmendi and Orli Shuka in ‘Hyena’
filmReview: Hyena takes corruption and sleaziness to a truly epic level
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans campaign: Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after £300,000 gift from Lloyds Bank

Homeless Veterans campaign

Donations hit record-breaking £1m target after huge gift from Lloyds Bank
Flight MH370 a year on: Lost without a trace – but the search goes on

Lost without a trace

But, a year on, the search continues for Flight MH370
Germany's spymasters left red-faced after thieves break into brand new secret service HQ and steal taps

Germany's spy HQ springs a leak

Thieves break into new €1.5bn complex... to steal taps
International Women's Day 2015: Celebrating the whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Whirlwind wit of Simone de Beauvoir

Simone de Beauvoir's seminal feminist polemic, 'The Second Sex', has been published in short-form for International Women's Day
Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Mark Zuckerberg’s hiring policy might suit him – but it wouldn’t work for me

Why would I want to employ someone I’d be happy to have as my boss, asks Simon Kelner
Confessions of a planespotter: With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent

Confessions of a planespotter

With three Britons under arrest in the UAE, the perils have never been more apparent. Sam Masters explains the appeal
Russia's gulag museum 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities

Russia's gulag museum

Ministry of Culture-run site 'makes no mention' of Stalin's atrocities
The big fresh food con: Alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay

The big fresh food con

Joanna Blythman reveals the alarming truth behind the chocolate muffin that won't decay
Virginia Ironside was my landlady: What is it like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7?

Virginia Ironside was my landlady

Tim Willis reveals what it's like to live with an agony aunt on call 24/7
Paris Fashion Week 2015: The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp

Paris Fashion Week 2015

The wit and wisdom of Manish Arora's exercise in high camp
8 best workout DVDs

8 best workout DVDs

If your 'New Year new you' regime hasn’t lasted beyond February, why not try working out from home?
Miguel Layun interview: From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

From the Azteca to Vicarage Road with a million followers

Miguel Layun is a star in Mexico where he was criticised for leaving to join Watford. But he says he sees the bigger picture
Frank Warren column: Amir Khan ready to meet winner of Floyd Mayweather v Manny Pacquiao

Khan ready to meet winner of Mayweather v Pacquiao

The Bolton fighter is unlikely to take on Kell Brook with two superstar opponents on the horizon, says Frank Warren
War with Isis: Iraq's government fights to win back Tikrit from militants - but then what?

Baghdad fights to win back Tikrit from Isis – but then what?

Patrick Cockburn reports from Kirkuk on a conflict which sectarianism has made intractable
Living with Alzheimer's: What is it really like to be diagnosed with early-onset dementia?

What is it like to live with Alzheimer's?

Depicting early-onset Alzheimer's, the film 'Still Alice' had a profound effect on Joy Watson, who lives with the illness. She tells Kate Hilpern how she's coped with the diagnosis