Bell doubt for England but Australia lose Watson

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With hours left to the Ashes series, both sides were suddenly faced last night with calamity. Ian Bell, the England batsman, was hit on his wrist and his place in the first Test beginning here tomorrow is under threat.

If that was bad news for England, Australia were hurriedly attempting to regroup after Shane Watson, their all-rounder, was told his torn hamstring would prevent him playing.

The blow to Bell in the nets, after being struck by a James Anderson delivery, threw England into temporary disarray. Bell is confident he will play but, if he is not fit, he will be replaced by Ed Joyce, the Middlesex batsman who has yet to make his Test debut. Watson is replaced by Michael Clarke.