England facing injury crisis ahead of first ODI

November 12th, 2008 - 9:36 pm ICT by IANS  

Mumbai, Nov 12 (IANS) England’s fast-bowling department is facing a crisis ahead of their first one-dayer at Rajkot Friday with Stuart Broad being the latest to be rendered doubtful with an injury.The 22-year-old seamer was rested for Tuesday’s practice match against Mumbai XI with a sore right knee which he suffered during Sunday’s warm-up match.

Broad has been given an injection and will face a fitness test in Rajkot Thursday, on the eve of the first ODI of the seven-match series.

“He landed awkwardly near the boundary. It seems to have settled down, but we will not know if he is fit for the first ODI until he comes through practice,” coach Peter Moores said.

Broad’s fitness will be a matter of some concern to England, already without left-arm seamer Ryan Sidebottom, who is yet to bowl at full capacity after arriving here with a troublesome right Achilles sustained during the Stanford Series in Antigua.

Should Broad fail his fitness test, England will almost certainly field Graeme Swann and Samit Patel in a twin spin attack.

Lancashire seamer James Anderson appears to have done enough in the opening two warm-up matches to earn a recall after missing out for the big Stanford showdown.

The India camp, too, has been hit by injury. Ishant Sharma, who had a successful series against Australia taking 15 wickets, will sit out due to a sprain in the left knee. He has been advised five day’s rest.

Meanwhile, former captain Michael Vaughan is also set to join the England Performance Squad here, ahead of the two Tests after the ODIs.

“Someone of Michael Vaughan’s experience trying to get back in the team creates the competitive environment we need, with everybody pushing very hard.”

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