Welcome to the new Independent website. We hope you enjoy it and we value your feedback. Please contact us here.


Ashes 2013-14: Tim Bresnan 'ready' to return for second Test


Tim Bresnan says he was always aiming to return in time for the second Ashes Test after suffering a stress fracture of the lower back in August.

The Yorkshire bowler could replace Chris Tremlett in England's seam attack unless the tourists opt to play two spinners. Bresnan took four first-innings wickets and made an unbeaten half-century as the England Performance Programme drew with Queensland Second XI in Brisbane last week.

Having watched the defeat in the first Test, Bresnan hopes to have the same impact as on the last Ashes tour when he helped England win the last two Tests to clinch the series. "It's been quite frustrating travelling with the guys and doing all the prep, but knowing I probably wasn't going to play any of the warm-up games," he said. "The medical team sat down then and said I may not be fit for Brisbane; there's a slim chance for Adelaide, but – if everything goes well – we can push for that.

"[Coach] Andy [Flower] was happy with that, so brought me along as a spare member of the team. The lads have been great and pretty much treated me like one of the squad, so that's been very good. Now I'm ready."

Meanwhile, Alastair Cook and fast bowler James Anderson have been named on the six-man shortlist for the ICC Cricketer of the Year award. They are joined by South Africa's Hashim Amla, Australia's Michael Clarke, M S Dhoni of India and Sri Lanka's Kumar Sangakkara. Both England players were named in the Test team of the year with spinner Graeme Swann.