England's record wicket-taker James Anderson made a promising comeback for Lancashire's second team as he returned from a calf injury lay-off.

Anderson is hopeful of playing a part in the latter stages of the Ashes after hobbling out of the opening match against Australia on day one.

He bowled only four overs in England's defeat at Edgbaston and missed the subsequent drawn match at Lord's.

The 37-year-old will also be sidelined for this week's clash at Headingley, but he sent down nine overs for Lancashire's second string on Tuesday against their Leicestershire counterparts at Northern Cricket Club in Crosby.

He had Leicestershire's Sam Bates caught behind by wicketkeeper George Lavelle, before pinning Ben Mike lbw.

Anderson posted figures of 2-23, with fellow paceman George Burrows taking 6-22 in 13 overs as Leicestershire made 224 at the Merseyside club.

Depending on Anderson's progress, the 575-wicket Test veteran may come into contention for the fourth Ashes clash at Lancashire's Old Trafford home.

That match runs from September 4-8, with the fifth Test at The Oval beginning on September 12.

England have named an unchanged 12-man squad for the third Ashes Test following the dramatic draw with Australia at Lord's.

The hosts came up short in their bid to level the five-match series on Sunday, Australia reaching the close on 154-6 after being set an unlikely 267 for victory.

Jofra Archer capped an impressive debut with three second-innings wickets but England ran out of time in a game badly hampered by rain, meaning the tourists remain 1-0 up with three to play.

With the next Test beginning on Thursday at Headingley, the selectors have kept faith with the same group of players, Sam Curran named alongside the team who featured at the home of cricket.

Opening batsman Jason Roy retains his place despite managing just 40 runs in four innings so far against Australia.

James Anderson is once again missing but the seamer will continue his recovery from injury by playing for Lancashire's second XI this week.

Having bowled just four overs in the first Test at Edgbaston due to an issue with his right calf, England's all-time leading wicket-taker will feature in a three-day friendly against Leicestershire that starts on Tuesday.

England announced Anderson will be "assessed on an ongoing basis" ahead of the fourth Test, which takes place at Old Trafford.

 

England squad for third Ashes Test:

Joe Root (captain), Jofra Archer, Jonny Bairstow, Stuart Broad, Rory Burns, Jos Buttler, Sam Curran, Joe Denly, Jack Leach, Jason Roy, Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes.

Pat Cummins feels Australia will know what to expect if they face Jofra Archer in the second Ashes Test at Lord's.

Archer is widely expected to replace James Anderson, who was restricted to just four overs in Australia's first Test win at Edgbaston because of a calf problem, in the England attack.

England had Australia 122-8 even without Anderson but the tourists recovered to post 284 thanks to the first of two centuries from Steve Smith, who frustrated the depleted hosts and inspired a brilliant comeback.

Australia are now set to be faced with the raw pace of Archer, one of England's heroes from the Cricket World Cup, but Cummins indicated it is not a challenge that will daunt Tim Paine's men.

Asked about the loss of Anderson and Archer's probable introduction, Cummins told reporters: "It was obviously unfortunate for them that he [Anderson] went down early in the last game.

"It's no secret he's a massive loss, he's been their highest wicket taker, arguably the best bowler in the Ashes the last few series, soon as he went down I felt like it was a real opportunity especially that second innings to try get some overs into their bowlers and bat well and luckily we did.

"Our boys have played with Jofra, against him in the World Cup or with him in the IPL or Big Bash League so he's not an unknown we'll do our homework but we will face him."

 

Ryan Harris believes James Anderson ought to shoulder a big share of the blame for England's defeat in the Ashes opener at Edgbaston.

Anderson apologised to his team-mates after suffering a recurrence of a calf injury on day one of the series against Australia last Thursday.

England's leading Test wicket-taker was only able to bowl four overs as the tourists recovered from a poor start to win by 251 runs.

Anderson was passed fit to play in Birmingham after missing the one-off Test against Ireland due to a calf injury he sustained playing for Lancashire last month.

The 37-year-old will miss the second Test at Lord's and former Australia paceman Harris has questioned how he came to be selected for the start of the battle for the urn.

He told Omnisport: "All in all, it's easy to question Joe Root's captaincy but I'd put a bit of pressure on Jimmy Anderson, saying he was fit for the match and getting through only four overs.

"I know injury is injury, but to come off an injury and say you are 100 per cent fit for an Ashes Test match is a big call.

"Bowling in the nets to bowling in the intensity of a Test, let alone an Ashes Test, is very different. To break down after four overs, you could cop it after 20-odd overs, but after four overs puts a lot of pressure on your bowling unit.

"From the start Joe Root was sort of doomed, all Australia had to do - although they didn't in the first innings - was to grind the bowlers down as they knew they were a bowler down.

"They did that in the second innings. It doesn't help when your experienced, leading strike bowler does that."

England seamer James Anderson hopes to play a role later in the Ashes despite admitting he will be out "for a while" with a calf injury.

The 37-year-old re-injured his calf during the first Test at Edgbaston, where Australia took a 1-0 series lead courtesy of a 251-run victory.

Anderson has been ruled out of the second Test and will need to prove his fitness in a match before returning, but the veteran is hopeful of playing a role.

"The adrenalin of the Ashes was probably a factor. There were nerves on the first day of the series and maybe I tried a little harder," he wrote in a column for The Sun.

"Perhaps my calf wasn't happy with the extra strain being placed on it, but to be honest, I don't want to give too much deep thought to what caused the problem.

"My focus now is to get better and try everything possible to play a role later in the series.

"I certainly have no intention of giving up. If I don't play against Australia, then the winter tours to New Zealand and South Africa are the next target."

Anderson managed to bowl just four overs in the first Test as England had no answers to Steve Smith, who made centuries in each innings to lead Australia.

As for his return, Anderson – who has taken 575 Test wickets – accepted he would be sidelined "for a while".

"I felt very guilty – I think that's only natural – even though there was not a lot I could have done about it," he wrote.

"It's hard to say when I might play again but it won't be for a while. I hope to do some very gentle work at the end of this week – not running or bowling or anything like that – but really it is a case of assessing things on a daily basis.

"The England management want me to play some cricket before I return for a Test match. So I'll have to schedule that as well, which is not so easy because it is mainly Twenty20 matches at the moment."

James Anderson will miss the second Ashes Test against Australia due to a calf injury, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) confirmed.

After bowling four overs on day one at Edgbaston on Thursday, Anderson left the field due to feeling tightness in his right calf.

The 37-year-old seamer had a scan later in the day and despite batting in both of England's innings he did not feature again in the field, as Australia - inspired by Steve Smith - won by 251 runs.

England's all-time leading Test wicket-taker will now miss the second match of the series, which starts at Lord's on August 14, and will continue to be evaluated.

An ECB statement said: "[An] MRI confirmed that Anderson has suffered a calf injury. As a result of the injury, he will commence a rehabilitation programme working with the England and Lancashire medical teams.

 "He will be reassessed on an ongoing basis regarding his availability for the rest of the Ashes series."

World Cup winner Jofra Archer, who had also been struggling with a side strain in the build-up to the Edgbaston Test, looks set to be Anderson's replacement.

Archer has been named in a Sussex second XI squad to play against Gloucestershire this week and came on as a substitute fielder for England in Birmingham.

England also had concerns over the fitness of Chris Woakes during the first Test, with the Warwickshire bowler restricted to just 13 overs during Australia's second innings.

James Anderson will miss the second Ashes Test against Australia due to a calf injury, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) confirmed.

James Anderson will not take to the field in Australia's second innings of the first Ashes Test, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has confirmed.

Anderson experienced a calf issue while bowling on day one and left Edgbaston early to undergo a scan.

The 37-year-old came in to bat as England surpassed Australia's tally of 284 by 90 runs on day three, but he did not return for the final session.

The ECB has now confirmed Anderson will not field for the rest of the Test, though the Lancashire paceman will bat if required.

Australia went into day four with a 34-run lead, with Steve Smith's unbeaten 46 having steadied the ship for the tourists following some early inroads for England's bowlers.

Chris Woakes does not appear to have much hope of "the best fast bowler who's ever lived" James Anderson being available to play a part on day four of the first Ashes Test at Edgbaston.

Though Anderson batted as England were bowled out for 374, giving them a first-innings lead of 90, he did not join the hosts as they returned to field on day three.

In his absence England reduced Australia to 124-3, the tourists 34 runs ahead when bad light stopped play, with Steve Smith unbeaten on 46 having rescued them with a remarkable 144 in the first innings.

England need to find a way of dislodging Smith if they are to set up a manageable run chase, and Woakes indicated they will have to do so without their leading Test wicket-taker.

Asked how he felt when he learned Anderson would not be on the field for Australia's second innings, Woakes told a media conference: "I was gutted for Jimmy, he's obviously dying to play more than anyone and wants to play more than anyone.

"But it wasn't right which was unfortunate for him and unfortunate for us as a team with him being the best fast bowler that's ever lived, in my opinion, with the amount of wickets he's taken and all that.

"[His absence] is a bit of a blow but at the same time us as a unit have to go out there and try to do the job.

"Moving forward, I actually don't know [whether he will be available on Sunday]. The fact he hasn't taken much part in the game so far doesn't look too promising but I actually don't know.

"It's a well-poised Ashes Test match. It's been a great Test match so far, reasonably even. We're pretty happy having them 30 for three.

"If we can start well in the morning, two big wickets up front could be quite crucial. All of a sudden if you have them 50 or 60 for five, it's a big turning point. Tomorrow morning, as always, is important."

Woakes put on a stand of 65 with Stuart Broad to help build a decent lead after England had lost four wickets for 18 runs and slumped to 300-8, and Woakes knows how vital those extra runs could prove.

"That partnership with Stuart, 60 runs or so, could be quite a big part of the game," he added.

"Pleased with the way we played and it was quite important we put on a partnership there because at that point it wasn't looking like we were getting too big of a lead."

James Anderson will be available to bat for England on day three of the opening Ashes Test, though it is not yet confirmed if he will bowl.

Anderson suffered a calf injury on the first day at Edgbaston, having bowled four overs for one run in the opening session on Thursday.

He later had scans on the injury, with Stuart Broad confirming England were unsure as to the full extent of the problem.

The 37-year-old was seen running in the warm up on day two but did not have to take part in Friday's play as England batted out all three sessions - Rory Burns scoring 125 not out to move the hosts within 17 runs of Australia's tally of 284.

Anderson's recovery now seems to have picked up pace, with the ECB confirming to Omnisport that the Lancashire paceman will be able to bat if required.

However, no decision has yet been made on whether Anderson – who ran in the warm up – will bowl, with the ECB to take a view later in the day as to whether England's record Test wicket-taker should do so.

Stuart Broad is hoping for good news as England await an update on the full extent of the injury suffered by James Anderson during the first Ashes Test. 

England's leading Test wicket-taker Anderson had been deemed fit to start the series opener after suffering with a calf problem in recent weeks, but an issue with the same muscle saw him limited to just four overs on Thursday.

Broad, who picked up the slack with a superb five-for, revealed the veteran apologised for his inability to aid the cause.

But England are optimistic that a test on the "tight" calf would return positive results.

"[Anderson] went off straight after his spell but didn't say anything and came out back to field. We don't know the full extent yet," said Broad, in quotes reported by BBC Sport.

"He is a bit quiet and came up to the bowlers and said sorry but there is nothing to be sorry about. He is a bit quiet and bit frustrated.

"All we can hope is the news is better than we expect."

Figures of 5-86 included Broad's 100th Ashes wicket, removing the resolute Steve Smith after an outstanding 144 to close the Australia innings.

Having seen the tourists recover from 122-8 to 284 all out, Broad acknowledged he had forgotten quite how exacting such rollercoaster contests can be in one of sport's greatest rivalries.

"I feel quite exhausted," he said. "I think that comes with the emotion of the first day of an Ashes series.

"You forget how emotionally draining these series can be and we went down to a three-man seam attack, which upped the overs.

"Smith played a wonderful knock, but anytime you bowl them out for under 300 on the first day of a Test match, we're pretty happy.

"It looks like there's runs out there if someone gets in, so we should take encouragement from the way he played.

"Australia threw it back at us after tea and I'd expect that throughout the series."

Steve Smith scored arguably the finest century of his Test career to rescue Australia from the brink of collapse in the first Ashes Test against England side facing an anxious wait to learn the extent of an injury to James Anderson.

Having won the toss and opted to bat, Australia twice looked in deep trouble despite England only being able to get four overs out of leading Test wicket-taker Anderson, who was sent for a scan due to "tightness" in his calf.

Australia were reduced to 35-3 and then 122-8, but on each occasion former captain Smith performed a rebuilding job and was rewarded for anchoring the innings with a hundred on his first Test appearance since serving a 12-month ban.

He thrived amid the predictable boos that greeted him, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft following their suspensions for ball tampering in the South Africa series last year and, having successfully reviewed an lbw decision on 34, racked up 144 to guide Australia to 284 before Stuart Broad bowled him to claim his fifth wicket and 100th in Ashes cricket.

England survived two overs without loss before the close, reaching stumps on 10-0.

Australia won the toss and opted to bat, a decision that looked questionable as the first three wickets fell in short order. Warner, having been incorrectly given not out caught behind, went in the fourth over lbw to Broad.

HawkEye showed the ball would have missed the stumps, setting the tone for a day when umpire errors were commonplace, before Bancroft edged the same man to first slip.

England successfully reviewed and had Usman Khawaja caught behind for 13, but Smith – in a stand of 64 with Travis Head – mounted his first recovery effort of the day as Australia reached lunch without further damage.

Chris Woakes trapped Head in front in the sixth over after the restart, with an aghast Smith correctly given a reprieve in the following over after initially being ruled out not playing a shot.

Another successful review saw Matthew Wade fall to Woakes lbw before captain Tim Paine and James Pattinson went in the space of three balls to Broad. Paine played a dreadful pull shot and Pattinson's exit came with another incorrect lbw decision.

A sub-200 total looked on the cards but Smith, aided by a battling 44 from Peter Siddle, managed the situation brilliantly, farming the strike and peppering the boundary as the depleted England attack tired.

Siddle, who put on 88 with Smith, fell to Moeen Ali but the ex-skipper added another 74 with Lyon, an innings that comprised 16 fours and two sixes eventually ended by a visibly frustrated Broad before Rory Burns and Jason Roy staved off 12 balls.

James Anderson will have a scan on his calf after bowling just four overs in the first session of the Ashes.

The England seamer conceded a solitary run from a probing new-ball spell at Edgbaston, as the hosts reduced Australia to 83-3 at lunch.

However, the availability of England's all-time leading wicket-taker for the rest of the match is in question after the ECB confirmed he is suffering from tightness in his right calf.

Anderson injured the same muscle on July 2 playing for Lancashire against Durham, with the problem keeping him out of action until this week.

Stuart Broad took 2-17 and Chris Woakes 1-17 in a strong start for England, although the decision to pick Anderson ahead of the of Sam Curran, Olly Stone and Jofra Archer – the seam trio omitted from the hosts' 14-man squad - is likely to be called into question if he is unable to return.

Stuart Broad claimed two wickets before Australia recovered from a shaky start to reach 83-3 on the first morning of the Ashes.

Touring captain Tim Paine won the toss and opted to bat in the opening Test at Edgbaston, but his side were soon in trouble as the vastly experienced new-ball pairing of Broad and James Anderson started superbly, extracting seam movement to regularly beat the bat.

Broad, bowling notably fuller and posing a continued threat, removed openers David Warner and Cameron Bancroft for two and eight respectively in a superb first spell.

Australia also lost Usman Khawaja to Chris Woakes prior to lunch, but Steve Smith (23 not out) held firm in his first Test innings since he was suspended for his role in last year's ball-tampering scandal and Travis Head provided some much-needed impetus in reaching 26 not out.

Anderson - a fitness doubt ahead of this match - did not bowl again in the morning after an opening four-over burst that yielded figures of 0-1. He briefly left the field after that spell, although it was not clear whether his lack of overs prior to lunch was due to an injury scare or cautious management of the 37-year-old's workload.

Warner's brief innings was certainly not short of incident. Firstly, he was given a life on one when an edge down the leg side off Broad went unnoticed and England failed to call for a review.

In Broad's next over, England wasted a review after umpire Aleem Dar correctly turned down an lbw appeal. Broad did trap Warner in front four balls later, but replays showed the full-pitched delivery would have missed leg stump, meaning the batsman should have sent the decision upstairs.

Warner's dismissal was predictably greeted with jubilation by sandpaper-waving fans eager to remind the opener of his Cape Town ball-tampering shame.

Bancroft, representing Australia for the first time since that saga, soon became a second victim for Broad, edging to Joe Root at first slip having been squared up by one that left him.

A successful review from England then accounted for Khawaja, who got the faintest of edges to a Woakes delivery.

However, Smith would not be shifted and Head, after beginning his innings with 15 dot balls, scored freely to lift the pressure on Australia, who opted to leave out Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood on a day when showers were forecast in the afternoon.

England and Australia will spend the next seven weeks as fierce rivals with the Ashes on the line.

The return from suspension of three Australia star batsmen means the visitors are back up to full strength as they chase a first Test series win in England for 18 years.

The triumphant 2001 side was loaded with all-time greats including Steve and Mark Waugh, Shane Warne, Ricky Ponting, Glenn McGrath and Adam Gilchrist.

Few of the England team of the day would have earned a place in Australia's side, such was the absurd strength of the tourists' squad.

However, the gap has closed considerably in the years since, and merging the teams for a combined Ashes XI in 2019 would test the judgment of any selector.

Here is a look at how such a team might look, with grovelling apologies to the strong contenders who missed the cut.


Cameron Bancroft (Australia)

Edgbaston will have a welcome waiting for the man who used sandpaper to tamper with the ball during Australia's Test with South Africa at Newlands last year. Bancroft has the runs for Durham this year to justify his return to Australia's ranks on form, even if many might feel uneasy about his presence after serving a nine-month ban. It could be touch and go whether he opens or bats in the middle order, but he gets the nod for this XI on the basis of England being in an opener crisis.

David Warner (Australia)

The brains behind the Newlands plot is also back in the Test arena. Warner is a mighty batsman, and nobody would question his ability. He comes into the Ashes off a fine World Cup performance, and his wicket will be a prized one within the England ranks. Described in one newspaper verdict of sandpapergate as "the most hated man in cricket", Warner is the man the home crowds would love to see fail, even if privately they would happily have him on their side.

Steve Smith (Australia)

Culled as captain, and banned along with Warner for a year, Smith did nothing to prevent Bancroft and Warner's actions and he will be braced for a barrage of flak during the Ashes. He has the batting chops and the temperament to handle sledging from the stands, however. Smith is the finest middle-order batsman of his generation, a rock of Australia's team and, past mistakes notwithstanding, a de facto leader.

Joe Root (England, captain)

If questions are asked of England's batting line-up, England's skipper usually finds an answer. He may need to provide the glue to bond together several unstable innings over the coming weeks, and there are few more accomplished anchor batsmen in world cricket. His team are the bookmakers' favourites to take the urn, with Root's contribution expected to be pivotal.

Jonny Bairstow (England)

A galvanising force behind England's glorious World Cup campaign, Bairstow has produced worrisome form in the longest format and went for a pair against Ireland. He averages 25.83 in 10 Tests over the past 12 months, dragging down his overall batting average. The Ashes might bring the best out of the Yorkshireman.

Ben Stokes (England)

Stokes will hope to enjoy August 2019 more than August 2018, when he faced the stress of a crown court trial on a charge of affray. Stokes cleared his name and has moved on, reinstated for the Ashes as England's vice-captain and hailed a national hero after his World Cup exploits. Many have crumbled in the face of comparisons to Ian Botham but Stokes thrives on the all-rounder role and could far surpass Beefy's achievements before his career is out. A man who seems made for an Ashes series.

Jos Buttler (England, wicketkeeper)

Tim Paine captains Australia, as well as keeping wicket, because in both senses he is considered a safe pair of hands. But Buttler gets the stumps role here, his explosive batting a tremendous complement to his skill with the gloves. Buttler has come on as a Test cricketer in the last year, as well as being a key component of the white-ball team that many expect him to captain before long. He gives back the Test vice-captaincy to Stokes for this series, but is unlikely to mind.

Pat Cummins (Australia)

Rated by the ICC as the world's number one bowler, Cummins has taken wickets at a prolific rate over the past couple of years. He would earn his place on that basis alone, but Cummins can bat too and made three scores in the forties in the last Ashes series. Years of injury woe are behind him, with the tall paceman capable of wreaking havoc in this series.

Jofra Archer (England)

Here's the wild card. Archer is launching his Test career in the Ashes but has already demonstrated he is a swimmer when tossed in at the deep end. The Barbados-born fast bowler enjoyed a terrific World Cup, defying a painful side strain to emerge as a star of the tournament. The 24-year-old looks like the man England have been waiting for, as the established Anderson-Broad axis enters its twilight days. He should thrive, and play in many of these series.

Nathan Lyon (Australia)

England have worries in the spin department when it comes to Tests, with neither Moeen Ali nor Adil Rashid establishing themselves as reliable wicket-taking slow bowlers at this level. Lyon's average is comfortably better than both England men, and with 86 Tests behind him the one-time Adelaide Oval groundsman has come a long way in the game. He has pouched 343 Test wickets and, regardless of conditions that should favour the seamers, will fancy taking more victims on this tour. A shoo-in for an Ashes dream team.

James Anderson (England)

This will be an Ashes farewell, surely, for Anderson. Few would doubt his capacity to go out in style, with the 37-year-old bidding to add to 575 Test wickets, 104 of which have accounted for Australians. He has succeeded McGrath as the preeminent paceman in the ongoing story of the Ashes, with few seamers capable of matching the craft of the man from Burnley. A late-summer Ashes, after the British heatwave, with plenty of cloud cover likely, could have been designed for Anderson.

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