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Last Updated: Tuesday, 30 August 2005, 07:40 GMT 08:40 UK
Jones in bid to speed up recovery
Simon Jones
Jones watches the action from the players' balcony
England's Simon Jones hopes several trips to an oxygen chamber will speed up his recovery from an ankle injury ahead of the decisive Ashes Test.

"I sit in there for an hour at a time and I will be doing this twice a day for the next few days," he said.

"I will be doing everything I can to get in that side for the fifth Test."

Paceman Jones left the field during the fourth-Test victory with what was diagnosed as "an anterior impingement of the soft tissue in the ankle joint".

It would be nice to go through the series with the same 11 players
England coach Duncan Fletcher

A scan at a Nottingham hospital showed no fracture but England coach Duncan Fletcher is far from confident he will take the field at The Oval on 8 September.

"I can't know at this stage whether he will be fit," said Fletcher. "But I'm not confident that he will play.

"He will be a big loss because he seems to have one over on their batsmen."

Hyperbaric oxygen chambers are used in the treatment of certain sports injuries because they can increase the oxygen supply to the injured part of the body.

While in the chamber, Jones will be breathing 100% oxygen, compared to the 21% oxygen and 79% nitrogen found in normal air.

Jones has proved to be a valuable weapon for England, taking 5-44 in Australia's first innings at Trent Bridge.

And so far the Welshman has claimed 18 wickets in the series at a cost of only 21 runs each - better than any other England bowler.

If Jones is unable to play at The Oval, it would leave the selectors facing a major dilemma.

But Fletcher refused to comment on who could be called up as a possible replacement.

"It would be nice to go through the series with the same 11 players," said Fletcher.

"I'll be discussing the matter with the other selectors later and at this stage I'm not going to say what we'll do."

Hampshire's Chris Tremlett has been in the squad for all four Tests without getting a game, but it would be a gamble to bring him in for his debut with the Ashes at stake.

All-rounder Paul Collingwood is not as quick as Jones but could be a useful draft if runs are needed.

James Anderson has still not regained the form he produced when bursting onto the international scene three winters ago.

Somerset's Andy Caddick has produced match-winning performances in Test cricket but is now 36 and has not played for England since January 2003.

England will hope, however, that Jones can regain full fitness in time to play in a game which could see the team win the Ashes for the first time since 1986/7.

He was prepared to bat on the final day at Trent Bridge with Andrew Strauss as his runner, but he was not needed as Ashley Giles and Matthew Hoggard saw England home to a three-wicket win.

Interview: Duncan Fletcher

Interview: Hampshire's Chris Tremlett

Interview: Former England captain Mike Gatting


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