James Anderson remains hungry to play for England after missing the Ashes - and has backed Joe Root to carry on as Test captain.

Seamer Anderson bowled just four overs on the first day of the opener against Australia due to a calf injury, though it was initially hoped he would still feature in the rest of the series.

However, while attempting to prove his fitness before the fourth Test at his home ground of Old Trafford, the 37-year-old suffered a setback on duty for Lancashire's second XI, ruling him out of contention.

Yet despite a disappointing 2019 so far, Anderson remains determined to get back to full fitness and turn out for his country again.

"At the minute, I'm just focusing on getting fit again. I've still got the hunger and desire to play for England," Anderson told Omnisport.

"As I've said before this year, up until I got injured, I've been bowling as well as I ever have, so I've still got the hunger there to get through this, do the rehab and get my body in good shape again and hopefully get onto a winter tour."

Without their all-time leading wicket-taker in the longest format, England have come up short in their bid to regain the Ashes on home soil.

Defeat in Manchester on Sunday means Australia - who won the previous series 4-0 - hold a 2-1 lead with just this week’s finale at the Oval to go.

Root's position as skipper has come into question in the aftermath of the fourth Test, though Anderson is adamant England do not need a captaincy change despite concerns extra responsibility has hampered the Yorkshireman's batting.

"I certainly think he's the right man for the job," Anderson said. "He's done some great work with the Test side over the last few years.

"From the team's point of view, we've shown glimpses of what we can do but been a little bit inconsistent. So it's about finding that consistency as a group.

"And I think he [Root] will be as disappointed as anyone with his form. It's a tricky one, whether if he had batted [at number] four it would make any difference.

"I don't think his captaincy is necessarily affecting his batting, he's just not scored the runs that he would have liked in the series."


James Anderson was speaking on behalf of ‘The Test Experts’ Specsavers, Official Test Partner for England cricket ahead of the final Test of the Specsavers Ashes Series at The Oval. Specsavers are encouraging fans to take eye and ear tests this summer.

James Anderson "put his heart and soul" into recovering from the calf injury that ultimately dashed his Ashes dreams, earning the sympathy of Stuart Broad.

England's all-time leading Test wicket-taker was ruled out of the Old Trafford and Oval Tests after suffering a recurrence of his calf problem during the opening clash with Australia at Edgbaston.

The 575-wicket paceman featured for Lancashire's second XI in a bid to prove his fitness but came up short and the 37-year-old looks set to have bowled his last ball in Ashes action.

"He's obviously very disappointed, he's put his heart and soul into getting back to full fitness," said Broad ahead of the fourth Test at Old Trafford.

"It was early June when he hurt his calf initially, he got back fit for the first game and that didn't quite work out how he wanted.

"He's done everything he possibly could. I've seen him running, bowling – he's bowled 20 overs in a day.

"He's frustrated, he's going to have a period of time of ifs and buts, what if he'd done this or what if he'd done that.

"But it's important for him to have a bit of a break now and look forward to future challenges."

Broad had envisaged a very different outcome for Anderson in this series, but he insisted his team-mate has a lot of cricket left in him.

"I had in my mind that it was almost written in the stars that he'd come back and bowl from the James Anderson end and bowl us to victory," added Broad.

"That's not going to happen, but he's got a lot of cricket left in him and he'll be desperate to get that calf right, because it's a long-winded calf injury, two or three months' worth of calf niggle and he'll want to get rid of that."

James Anderson's Ashes career looks to have been ended by a recurrence of a calf injury after England's greatest bowler was ruled out of the Old Trafford and Oval Tests.

The 575-wicket paceman was on duty for Lancashire second XI for the second week in a row, looking to prove his fitness for the climax of the series against Australia.

With England and Australia tied at 1-1, the prospect of Anderson coming into Joe Root's team could have provided a major spur for the hosts.

However, a right calf problem has seen the plans shelved, and at the age of 37 it seems certain Anderson has played his final Ashes match. He will be 39 by the time the next series against Australia comes around Down Under in 2021-22.

Anderson limped out of the ongoing series on day one of the Edgbaston opener and has not been involved since.

The 37-year-old seamer clung to the hope of returning, but calf trouble resurfaced in the Lancashire second-string game against Durham at Chester Boughton Hall Cricket Club.

"That's a big blow for us," said England spinner Jack Leach.

"Obviously he's a great bowler, probably England's greatest bowler, so whenever that happens it's going to be a big blow.

"I'm gutted for him. He's worked really hard to try to get fit for Lord's and for this game [at Old Trafford] so it's a shame for Jimmy and a shame for England.

"We have to move on without him for this game and for the rest of the series. But I'm sure he’ll come back strong, and it's a shame for him."

Anderson has taken 104 wickets in 32 Tests against Australia, at an average of 34.56.

He had looked certain to return to the England squad at Old Trafford, where a stand is named in his honour, providing he came through his low-profile county outings.

England have instead had to look elsewhere to find competition in the bowling department, with Somerset's Craig Overton called up.

Leach, who played the gutsy support role at Headingley when Ben Stokes produced his match-winning century, said England would be fully focused for the rest of the series after enjoying a short break from camp.

Players have been free to return home and spend time with friends and family, and Leach told BBC Radio 5 Live: "You want to be excited and refreshed going to Old Trafford – that's the most important thing for the guys.

"I’m sure Rooty [captain Root] and Trev [coach Trevor Bayliss] will be sending that message to us on Sunday evening, when we're meeting up, and on Monday at training we’ve got to be right on the money.

"The celebrations after Headingley, not from us but from the rest of the country, it feels like it’s the end and we've won the Ashes. But that’s not the case. It's 1-1 and there's two games to go.

"Australia are a good side and they're well up for this and we know they're going to come back hard and we’ve got to be ready for that."

James Anderson has been ruled out of the rest of the Ashes series due to pain in his right calf, the England and Wales Cricket Board has announced.

England’s record Test wicket-taker limped out of the action on day one of the opening match in the series at Edgbaston, and has not been involved since.

However, the 37-year-old seamer clung to the hope he would be able to prove his fitness in time for the matches at Old Trafford and The Oval.

His prospects looked to be improving as he took part in two second XI matches for his county Lancashire, but Anderson suffered a setback on Thursday, and medical checks dealt him bad news.

The ECB said on its website: "England and Lancashire seamer James Anderson has been ruled out for the rest of the Specsavers Ashes series.

"Whilst bowling in the ninth over on Thursday in Lancashire’s second XI four-day friendly against Durham at Chester Boughton Hall Cricket Club, Anderson became aware of right calf pain following on from 20 overs he had bowled on Tuesday

"He immediately sought a medical assessment from Lancashire and was withdrawn from the remainder of the game. Further review with the ECB medical team has confirmed that he will be unavailable for the remaining two Specsavers Ashes Tests."

Given his track record, Anderson looked sure to return to the England squad at Old Trafford, where a stand is named in his honour, providing he came through his low-profile county outings.

England have instead been prompted to look elsewhere to find competition in the bowling department, with Somerset’s Craig Overton called up for the first time since March 2018.

The fast-medium bowler has played in three Tests, including defeats to Australia in Adelaide and Perth in the 2017 Ashes.

He has 32 wickets at 21.34 apiece in the County Championship this season, and together with Sam Curran could rival Chris Woakes for a place in the team for Old Trafford, with the fourth Test due to start on September 4.


England squad for fourth Test: Joe Root (captain), Jofra Archer, Jonny Bairstow (wicketkeeper), Stuart Broad, Rory Burns, Jos Buttler, Sam Curran, Joe Denly, Jack Leach, Craig Overton, Jason Roy, Ben Stokes, Chris Woakes.
 

 

James Anderson continued his comeback from the calf injury he reaggravated in the first Ashes Test as he bowled for Lancashire's second XI on Tuesday.

Having been limited to just four overs at Edgbaston, Anderson has missed the last two matches of the Ashes, but seems fit enough to return - if selected - for England at Lancashire's home ground Old Trafford in the fourth Test, which begins next Wednesday.

With the series tied at 1-1 following Ben Stokes' heroics at Headingley, Australia are likely to welcome talisman Steve Smith back from his concussion-enforced absence, meaning news of Anderson's fitness will provide another timely boost for Joe Root's side.

The 37-year-old bowled 20 overs in total for the second XI, taking 1-38 and claiming nine maidens on day one of a four-day match against Durham's second XI.

Jofra Archer has impressed for England in Anderson's absence, taking 13 wickets in two matches, and Chris Woakes would seem the most likely to drop out of the hosts' bowling attack should Anderson return at Old Trafford. 

Ben Stokes' remarkable heroics at Headingley mean the Ashes series is all square at 1-1 with two to play.

But beyond what can reasonably be considered among the greatest Test innings of all time in one of the most remarkable finales in the history of cricket's longest format, there is plenty for England and Australia to consider.

The flaws of both teams have contributed to the undulating drama of this series every bit as much as individual brilliance on each side.

Before they reconvene at Old Trafford next week, here are some selection quandaries England and Australia must ponder.

ENGLAND

Roy's race is run

While Stokes has transferred his golden Cricket World Cup form to the Test format, the punt on white-ball specialist Jason Roy bringing his talents to bear at the top of the England order has failed to come off.

A best of 28 has been followed by four consecutive failures to reach double figures, with muddled footwork and a lost off stump making it seem cruel to ask Roy to keep on facing the new ball. Dropping into the middle order, with Joe Denly promoted to open, is one option, though a spell out of the side feels kinder right now.

Should England want to bring in a new face alongside Rory Burns, Warwickshire's Dominic Sibley is the leading option thanks to three centuries and four fifties in the County Championship this season.

Buttler best left out?

Over the course of three Tests, Jos Buttler has edged down from five to seven in the England order. A gutsy second-innings 31 at Lord's is his only effort to recommend among a string of single-figure scores, even if he could do little about being run out by Headingley hero Stokes.

Surrey's Ollie Pope thumped an unbeaten double century against Hampshire earlier this month and looks ripe for a recall to the middle order in place of either Roy or Buttler.

Bowling at the James Anderson End… James Anderson?

Chris Woakes has become increasingly peripheral with the ball and Australia have nullified his all-round capabilities with short-pitched assaults. The identity of England's third seamer looks likely to change at Old Trafford.

James Anderson would love to feature at his home ground but must do more to prove his fitness in an outing with Lancashire's second XI this week.

Sam Curran would provide left-arm variety and accomplished batting from number eight in the order, yet may once again miss out on selection.

 

AUSTRALIA

Smith in for who?

Steve Smith could return from his concussion-enforced absence and the tourists are not short of candidates to make way.

Usman Khawaja is without a half-century in the series and his airy 23 during the second innings at Headingley stood as a jarring counterpoint to Marnus Labuschagne's application.

Travis Head and Matthew Wade might also need to help their cause in this week's tour match at Derbyshire.

Starc in for who?

Mitchell Starc has been a spectator so far but could be drafted into the XI to bowl on an Old Trafford surface well-suited to his talents.

The left-arm paceman's relative inability to bowl "dry" means he is an uneasy fit with Australia's overall gameplan, but his expertise against the tail would have been a huge asset in Leeds.

Taking out any seamer involved in rolling England for a first-innings 67 would be harsh, but James Pattinson would appear the most vulnerable.

Marsh an option to bolster attack

For the first time in the series, Australia's four-man attack looked tired as they wilted in the Headingley heat.

The lack of top-six batsmen emphatically stating their case could open the door to Mitchell Marsh. The all-rounder hit two centuries in the last Ashes series in Australia and his right-arm seam would ease the load on a supreme but now-wounded bowling unit.

England and Australia served up another all-time Ashes classic at Headingley as the hosts somehow secured a one-wicket victory to level the series.

Joe Root's team had looked dead and buried, in both the contest and the series, when chasing a record 359 in the third Test.

Still needing another 73 when last man Jack Leach came to the crease, England pulled off a miracle thanks to Ben Stokes' unbeaten 135.

We take a look at other thrilling Ashes Tests after the humdinger at Headingley.

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.

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