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Page last updated at 09:44 GMT, Wednesday, 28 July 2010 10:44 UK

Tim Bresnan back in England squad after Shahzad injury

First Test, Trent Bridge: England v Pakistan
Dates: 29-July-2 August Start time: 1100 BST
Coverage: Live ball-by-ball Test Match Special commentary on BBC 5 live sports extra, BBC Radio 4 Long Wave and online; Live text commentary, daily reports and scorecard on BBC Sport website& mobiles; also live on Sky Sports


Tim Bresnan
Bresnan had been dropped from the original 12-man squad

England have recalled Yorkshire's bowling all-rounder Tim Bresnan to the squad to face Pakistan in first Test, starting at Trent Bridge on Thursday.

Bresnan comes in for bowler Ajmal Shahzad, who has been ruled out of the match after feeling discomfort in his ankle in training on Tuesday.

"It is best he undergoes rehabilitation this week as a precaution," said England medical officer Nick Peirce.

Kevin Pietersen is fit despite a scare on Wednesday when he fell in training.

The batsman trod on a stray football in the outfield, and his right foot and ankle were both strapped up afterwards.

But England captain Andrew Strauss is confident he would be fit, and is keen for footballs to be banned from the ground - England have already banned players from warming-up by playing football after Owais Shah injured Joe Denly while tackling his fellow batsman at The Oval last year.

"I think we've just got to ban footballs being on the ground because they're still causing problems even though we're not playing it," said Strauss.

On Thursday, James Anderson, Stuart Broad, Steve Finn and Graeme Swann are likely to make up the bowling attack - with Bresnan missing out - with England playing six batsman and wicket-keeper Matt Prior.

There's no reason to expect at this stage that he won't be available for the second Test

Strauss on Shazhad

The injury is a blow for Shazhad, who was hoping to press his claims after impressing against Bangladesh of late.

However, Peirce explained: "After twisting his left ankle with Yorkshire over a week ago Ajmal went on to successfully play in a Clydesdale Bank 40 match for his county last Monday. Unfortunately Ajmal felt some discomfort following England practice at the Nation Cricket Performance Centre on Tuesday.

"We expect him to make a full recovery and he hasn't been ruled unavailable for the second Npower Test starting next week."

Strauss was disappointed for Shazhad but says he will come into contention for the second Test in Birmingham next week if he can prove his fitness.

"He did quite a lot of bowling yesterday. He was quite sore while bowling and the feeling was he wasn't quite ready to bowl in a Test match," said Strauss.

"These things always depend on how the injury heals up, but there's no reason to expect at this stage that he won't be available for the second Test."

Swann and seamer Finn return to the squad for the first Test after being given breaks by the selectors, while batsman Kevin Pietersen - not risked for the recent one-day series against Bangladesh - is is fit to play.

Ian Bell is the only absentee, ruled out for the entire four-Test series with a broken metatarsal.

"Ian Bell's untimely foot injury during the one-day was obviously a disappointing blow but he is now focused on his rehabilitation and should make a full recovery in due course," stated chief selector Geoff Miller.

"Ian's absence provides other batsmen with the chance to impress against a world class Pakistan bowling attack."

That means another opportunity to impress for Eoin Morgan, who is preferred to in-form Essex batsman Ravi Bopara.

Bopara hit two centuries in his last county match but one-day star Morgan has been given another chance to establish himself in the Test side, with the Ashes series against Australia looming large at the end of 2010.

"Ravi has been in good form but we have created our quality through consistency and we need to see a more from Eoin," added Miller.

Morgan will be determined to match the success he has achieved in one-day cricket in the longest format of the game.

The innovative 23-year-old left-hander has made two unbeaten centuries and a 50 in 50-over internationals this year and has scored three half centuries in Twenty20 matches for England.

His introduction to Test cricket was less spectacular with scores of 44 and 37 in his first two innings, both against Bangladesh.

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However, he showed his powers of resilience with an unbeaten 58 from 137 balls to help Middlesex to a draw with Sussex in the Championship match at Uxbridge on Saturday.

Pietersen has not played a competitive match since being dismissed for a duck against Australia in the final match of the one-day international series at Lord's on 3 July.

The 30-year-old, who scored 64 in his most recent Test innings against Bangladesh at Old Trafford in June, has recovered from the quadriceps strain above his left knee that led to him being rested for the one-day series against the Tigers, but has not been able to gain match practice.

He announced in June that he will leave Hampshire at the end of the season and has not been selected by the county since.

Meanwhile, Australia captain Ricky Ponting believes England will just shade the series against Pakistan, which continues at Edgbaston, The Oval and Lord's in August.

"I think it will be a decent series," reflected Ponting whose team almost pulled off a shock win at Headingley on Saturday when Pakistan, needing only 40 runs with seven wickets left, lost four wickets before edging a three-wicket victory to share the series 1-1.

I'll certainly be keeping an eye on what's happening

Australia captain Ricky Ponting

"If Pakistan bowl as well as they bowled in the two Tests against us, I'm sure they will trouble the English batsmen.

"With Pakistan on the rise and England a good settled Test match side, I think you're going to see some entertaining games. I think England will win. If you look at their side, I think they're a more complete team.

"Pakistan are still an inexperienced side - even Leeds probably highlighted that, the fact that we were probably only a catch or a few runs away from pulling off a big win.

"It will be an interesting series to watch. I'll certainly be keeping an eye on what's happening."


England squad: Andrew Strauss (capt), Alastair Cook, Jonathan Trott, Kevin Pietersen, Paul Collingwood, Eoin Morgan, Matt Prior (wkt), Stuart Broad, Graeme Swann, James Anderson, Steven Finn, Tim Bresnan.

Pakistan squad: Salman Butt (capt), Imran Farhat, Azhar Ali, Umar Amin, Umar Akmal, Shoaib Malik, Kamran Akmal (wkt), Mohammad Aamer, Umar Gul, Danish Kaneria, Mohammad Asif.

Umpires: Tony Hill (NZL) and Asoka de Silva (SRI)
TV umpire: Marais Erasmus (RSA)
Match referee: Ranjan Madugalle (SRI)



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see also
Strauss fully focused on Pakistan
28 Jul 10 |  England
Jonathan Agnew column
28 Jul 10 |  England
Collingwood cool on Pakistan hype
27 Jul 10 |  England
Finn decision queried by Fraser
27 Jul 10 |  England
England facing Pakistan test
27 Jul 10 |  England
Bresnan recalled to England squad
28 Jul 10 |  England
Miller defends squad selection
25 Jul 10 |  England
Pakistan wrap up win over Aussies
24 Jul 10 |  Cricket
The enigma that is Pakistan
27 Jul 10 |  Cricket
Pakistan in England 2010
07 Sep 10 |  Cricket
Live cricket on the BBC
26 Oct 11 |  Cricket


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