England are likely to find themselves with more fast bowlers than they need after their injury load appeared to ease yesterday. About twice as many in a country where spin is king – or at least the crown prince.
Both Stuart Broad and Graham Onions emerged from MRI scans on their troublesome backs with encouraging results. Although neither will play in the warm-up first-class match starting here tomorrow, the tests showed no acute damage and both should be available for the first Test next Friday.
England still have plenty of cover, although Ryan Sidebottom has departed for home with a thigh strain. Tim Bresnan (right), whose 4 for 28 yesterday demonstrated proper control, is staying with the Test squad and the lanky Middlesex fast bowler Steve Finn is joining. Liam Plunkett, who bowled only two overs yesterday, Ajmal Shahzad and Luke Wright should ensure supplies are not depleted.
Depending on the side's balance, Bresnan has a genuine chance of playing. Shahzad, too, may have support. Plunkett, picked ahead of both back in October, would appear to have bowled his first, second and final international overs of the winter.Reuse content