Pattinson gets shock England call

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The Independent Online

England today handed Darren Pattinson a shock Test debut in the second match of the npower series against South Africa.

Nottinghamshire's Pattinson, a former roof tiler who was born in Grimsby but raised in Australia, only joined up with the squad at Headingley yesterday due to back soreness felt by James Anderson.

But with Ryan Sidebottom failing to recover from a back niggle, his 29-year-old county colleague was drafted into the XI.

Talismanic all-rounder Andrew Flintoff also returned after a lengthy absence. His last Test appearance was before late starter Pattinson's first-class career began.

Flintoff last played in the final Ashes contest in January 2007, the same month in which Pattinson was plucked from obscurity by Victoria.

England one-day captain Paul Collingwood was axed after 33 consecutive Tests, stretching back to the winter of 2005-06.

Pattinson's ability to swing the ball at pace has earnt 29 first-class wickets in six appearances for his county this summer.

His inclusion, however, is even more of a surprise given that three of the lauded 2005 Ashes attack, Steve Harmison, Simon Jones and Matthew Hoggard were overlooked.

And Chris Tremlett was effectively first reserve among the bowling unit after being called up as cover for Sidebottom.

The South Africans retained the same side which salvaged a draw at Lord's in the opening match of the series despite following on.