'It's great to be involved, churning out the runs'

England's assessment of their position going into the third day of this Test will depend heavily on the state of Steve Harmison's health after their principal strike bowler left the field prematurely last night following an injury scare.

Harmison, the architect of Pakistan's first innings demise here, appeared to pull muscles in his left side with his first ball as the tourists began their second innings. He completed the over but returned to the dressing room shortly afterwards with the physiotherapist.

First indications last night were that the damage was not serious but England were mindful of a possible reaction overnight.

Already without Andrew Flintoff and Simon Jones, England can do without the loss of another frontline bowler, especially after Harmison's return to form with 6 for 19 in the first innings. England are in a dominant position, however, and for Pakistan, a deficit of 330 will look daunting. Yet Ian Bell, whose second hundred of this series appears to cement his position in the side, warned against complacency.

"We will not be going out tomorrow thinking the game is won," he said. "There are some world class players in the Pakistan dressing room capable of scoring big runs." Bell was clearly thrilled with his own contribution, describing it as "my most fluent performance for England", and he was oblivious to any suggestion that he had been selected only as a second choice after Flintoff.

"It is just great to be involved, to keep performing, putting the pressure on and keep churning out the runs so that when we get the likes of Vaughan and Flintoff back there is plenty of competition," he said.

Bell's fellow centurion, Alastair Cook, joined his team-mate in praising the contribution made by the tail, who helped add 140 for the last four wickets. "It was a great team effort, especially with Harmy coming in and helping Ian put on 70-odd," he said.

Bell added: "Even if they are not scoring runs they are holding up an end and frustrating the bowlers. It is when that happens that the opposition's heads can just drop a little."

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Life and Style
tech

Company reveals $542m investment in start-up building 'a rocket ship for the mind"

News
Bourgogne wine maker Laboure-Roi vice president Thibault Garin (L) offers the company's 2013 Beaujolais Nouveau wine to the guest in the wine spa at the Hakone Yunessun spa resort facilities in Hakone town, Kanagawa prefecture, some 100-kilometre west of Tokyo
i100
Arts and Entertainment
James Blunt's debut album Back to Bedlam shot him to fame in 2004
music

Singer says the track was 'force-fed down people's throats'

Sport
CSKA Moscow celebrate after equalising with a late penalty
football

News
i100
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

Two super-sized ships have cruised into British waters, but how big can these behemoths get?

Super-sized ships: How big can they get?

Two of the largest vessels in the world cruised into UK waters last week
British doctors on brink of 'cure' for paralysis with spinal cord treatment

British doctors on brink of cure for paralysis

Sufferers can now be offered the possibility of cure thanks to a revolutionary implant of regenerative cells
Let's talk about loss

We need to talk about loss

Secrecy and silence surround stillbirth
Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Will there be an all-female mission to Mars?

Women may be better suited to space travel than men are
Oscar Pistorius sentencing: The athlete's wealth and notoriety have provoked a long overdue debate on South African prisons

'They poured water on, then electrified me...'

If Oscar Pistorius is sent to jail, his experience will not be that of other inmates
James Wharton: The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

The former Guard now fighting discrimination against gay soldiers

Life after the Army has brought new battles for the LGBT activist James Wharton
Ebola in the US: Panic over the virus threatens to infect President Obama's midterms

Panic over Ebola threatens to infect the midterms

Just one person has died, yet November's elections may be affected by what Republicans call 'Obama's Katrina', says Rupert Cornwell
Premier League coaches join the RSC to swap the tricks of their trades

Darling, you were fabulous! But offside...

Premier League coaches are joining the RSC to learn acting skills, and in turn they will teach its actors to play football. Nick Clark finds out why
How to dress with authority: Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear

How to dress with authority

Kirsty Wark and Camila Batmanghelidjh discuss the changing role of fashion in women's workwear
New book on Joy Division's Ian Curtis sheds new light on the life of the late singer

New book on Ian Curtis sheds fresh light on the life of the late singer

'Joy Division were making art... Ian was for real' says author Jon Savage
Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

Sean Harris: A rare interview with British acting's secret weapon

The Bafta-winner talks Hollywood, being branded a psycho, and how Barbra Streisand is his true inspiration
Tim Minchin, interview: The musician, comedian and world's favourite ginger is on scorching form

Tim Minchin interview

For a no-holds-barred comedian who is scathing about woolly thinking and oppressive religiosity, he is surprisingly gentle in person
Boris Johnson's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Boris's boozing won't win the puritan vote

Many of us Brits still disapprove of conspicuous consumption – it's the way we were raised, says DJ Taylor
Ash frontman Tim Wheeler reveals how he came to terms with his father's dementia

Tim Wheeler: Alzheimer's, memories and my dad

Wheeler's dad suffered from Alzheimer's for three years. When he died, there was only one way the Ash frontman knew how to respond: with a heartfelt solo album