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Broad called up for India opener

cricket Updated: Jul 15, 2007 16:43 IST

AFP
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Uncapped pace bowler Stuart Broad was called up on Sunday into England's 13-man squad for the first Test against India starting at Lord's on Thursday.

Broad, 21, was included after fast bowler Stephen Harmison was rated "extremely doubtful" on Saturday for the opening match of a three-Test series after suffering a recurrence of his hernia injury while playing for Durham.

Leicestershire's Broad, the son of former England opening batsman Chris, has played nine one-day internationals but has yet to play in a Test.

He was included along with Lancashire quick James Anderson, the pair set to compete for the final place in England's starting side if, as expected, Harmison is unfit.

England's chairman of selectors, David Graveney, said: "Stephen Harmison's hernia problem will be re-assessed by our medical team when the team reports for the first Test on Monday evening.

"At this stage his chances of playing are slim and the choice for the final pace bowling position will be between James
Anderson and Stuart Broad.

"They are different types of bowlers and the final decision will depend on our assessment of the pitch and the weather conditions at Lord's."

England squad: Andrew Strauss, Alastair Cook, Michael Vaughan (capt), Kevin Pietersen, Paul Collingwood, Ian Bell, Matthew Prior (wk), Stephen Harmison, Ryan Sidebottom, Matthew Hoggard, Monty Panesar, James Anderson, Stuart Broad.

Graveney added: "It will be very disappointing if we are without Stephen as he has been in excellent form for Durham recently and looked to be back to his best in the last Test against the West Indies at Chester-le-Street.

"It may mean that we have to go into this series with a relatively inexperienced attack, but I am sure all of the bowlers concerned will relish the opportunity to test themselves against a side which has one of the strongest batting line-ups in world cricket."

Broad is currently playing against India for England Lions, the national 'A' side, in a three-day match which concludes at Chelmsford, east of London, on Sunday where he has so far taken two wickets for 54 runs in 16 overs.