England to shuffle pack without Finn

PA Sport
Stuart Broad, pictured, is likely to see action in place of the injured Steven Finn
.

View photo

Stuart Broad, pictured, is likely to see action in place of the injured Steven Finn

England are likely to make several changes, just one enforced, to their team for Saturday's second match on their tour of India.

Steven Finn is certain to be missing because of his thigh strain against Mumbai A at the DY Patil Sports Academy, where new Test captain Alastair Cook could also take a breather after his century in the first match at the Brabourne Stadium.

Fast bowler Finn, who pulled up on the first morning, was thought a likely member of a three-man pace attack for the first Test in Ahmedabad, but will surely have to play and come through unscathed the third tour match there if England are to stick to Plan A on November 15.

In his absence against India A, Tim Bresnan and James Anderson had to churn out more than 50 overs between them as the hosts reached 369 all out in the first innings and then put themselves back in front on 124 for four second time round.

Anderson said of Finn's setback: "It's not ideal because you want to choose from your strongest squad. But we're lucky we have a number of bowlers who can come in and do a great job for us."

Two men who can therefore expect to play for sure are Stuart Broad, the new Test vice-captain who could also deputise in charge for Cook, and Graham Onions. One or even both of Anderson and Bresnan, with plenty of overs under their belts already, can take a break.

"Graham Onions, I'm sure, will get a chance in the next couple of games to show what he can do," said Anderson. "It's exciting for those guys. Obviously it's unfortunate for Steven - we'd like him to be fit for selection - but injuries do happen."

England's other pressing concern, following a fixture in which Kevin Pietersen appeared to make a harmonious return, was a third-ball duck on debut for prospective Test opener Nick Compton. Should Cook sit out proceedings, Compton and young Yorkshireman Joe Root may both be given a chance to impress at the top of the order over the next three days.

Either way, Anderson is unperturbed by what he has seen so far from batsmen who piled up 426 between them, or bowlers who stuck to their task admirably.

"We got two guys getting hundreds, a couple of 50s in there, and the lower order chipped in with useful runs," he said. "I think that's the way we're going to win Test matches out here."

View Comments (1)