Injuries could dent Eng's WC chances

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Published: Friday, February 4, 2011, 10:43 [IST]
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Injuries could dent Eng's WC chances

England's chances of wresting its maiden World Cup could be marred by a spate of serious injuries that has afflicted the team in the past week or so.

First, off-spinner Graeme Smith had to pull out of the one-day series against Australia after just the first encounter, thanks to a recurring knee injury.

Then, paceman Chris Tremlett was ruled out from the 5th ODI onward due to side strain, while his fellow speedster Ajmal Shahzad picked up a hamstring strain in that match and joined Tremlett on the bench.

The side has been further depleted by fresh casualties in Tim Bresnan, who is suffering from a calf wound, and Paul Collingwood who will miss the final ODI against Australia due a back spasm. Meanwhile, Stuart Broad who has been out of action since mid-Dec due to a torn stomach muscle, will not play in the warm-up stages of the World Cup.

While Bresnan is not a part of the 15-member World Cup squad, he could be a replacement should any of the other fast bowlers not recover. But his injury is the worst of the lot, as indicated by coach Andy Flower.

"Probably it's Bresnan considering the sight of his injury, just above his Achilles tendon in his lower calf," Flower said when pushed on who was struggling the most. "But he's not a man who has suffered injuries, well not many injuries, in the past and hopefully he will recover very quickly and be ready somewhere near the start."

England have been left grappling for a full-strength squad to take to the subcontinent later this month and it could be especially tight for the two warm-up matches against Canada and Pakistan on Feb 16 and 18, respectively.

Collingwood, who flew out of Perth on Thursday evening, has been given paternity leave during the warm-up period along with Swann, leaving England to face the predicament of not having 11 fit players when they arrive in Bangladesh.


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