BBC Sport cricket


Related BBC sites

Page last updated at 09:34 GMT, Saturday, 26 July 2008 10:34 UK

Harmison handed recall by England

Steve Harmison
Harmison has not played a Test since the tour of New Zealand in March

England have recalled Durham fast bowler Steve Harmison for the crucial third Test against South Africa, which starts at Edgbaston on Wednesday.

The 29-year-old has not played a Test since March but, along with Paul Collingwood and a fit-again Ryan Sidebottom, is in the 13-man squad.

Darren Pattinson, a surprise late call-up for the second Test, and Chris Tremlett have both been left out.

England are 1-0 down in the series with two Tests left to play.

Changes were expected to England's attack, which has managed just 13 wickets in the last 344.3 overs sent down to South Africa in the series.

Ryan Sidebottom has been progressing well with his back injury over the past week and we're confident he'll be fit for selection

National selector Geoff Miller
Harmison was dropped after a poor display in England's heavy defeat on the winter tour of New Zealand but he has regained his pace and accuracy at Durham.

He is the leading wicket-taker in Division One of the County Championship this season, taking 41 wickets in nine first-class games at an average of 22.8.

"Steve has been bowling well for Durham this season and his inclusion in the Test squad gives us another option in terms of our bowling attack for the Edgbaston Test," said national selector Geoff Miller.

Pattinson received a shock international debut after just 11 first-class appearances, with the more experienced Harmison, Tremlett, Matthew Hoggard and Simon Jones all overlooked.

But the Nottinghamshire bowler made an uninspired debut in England's 10-wicket defeat and returns to his county.

Reigning England player of the year Sidebottom, whose back injury led to Pattinson and Tremlett being called up, is expected to be fit.

"Ryan has been progressing well with his back injury over the past week and we're confident he'll be fit for selection but obviously he'll be monitored closely in the lead up to next Wednesday," added Miller.

There were also concerns about the strength of England's batting line-up in the second Test after Collingwood was dropped from the team and wicket-keeper Tim Ambrose promoted to six in the order to accommodate the return of all-rounder Andrew Flintoff.

Should England revert to a four-man attack, Collingwood - a team-mate of Harmison at Durham - would return after having his run of 33 consecutive appearances ended at Headingley.

"Paul was unlucky to miss out on a place in the team for the second Test match but this decision was based on a number of factors," Miller explained.

"He has shown what a true professional he is by returning to Durham over the past week and playing well for his county."

England squad for the third Test against South Africa:

MP Vaughan (capt, Yorkshire), AN Cook (Essex), AJ Strauss (Middlesex), KP Pietersen (Hampshire), IR Bell (Warwickshire), PD Collingwood (Durham), A Flintoff (Lancashire), TR Ambrose (wkt, Warwickshire), SCJ Broad (Nottinghamshire), RJ Sidebottom (Nottinghamshire), SJ Harmison (Durham), JM Anderson (Lancashire), MS Panesar (Northamptonshire).

see also
Jones 'ready' for England recall
25 Jul 08 |  England
Harmison happy with Durham role
21 Jul 08 |  Durham
Pattinson pick concerns Harmison
19 Jul 08 |  England
Hoggard fears for England career
18 Jul 08 |  England
Selection was confused - Vaughan
21 Jul 08 |  England
Boycott hails Broad performance
22 Jul 08 |  England
South Africa in England in 2008
14 Nov 07 |  Cricket

related bbc links:

related internet links:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites