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July 17, 2011
Broad's match haul of 6 for 162 against Somerset, which included 5 for 95 in the first innings, was enough to spare him the axe following his demotion from the one-day side for the final match against Sri Lanka at Old Trafford. Reports from the game at Trent Bridge, where he had a tough contest with Marcus Trescothick, were that he was finding his rhythm again.
"We watched him bowl here at Trent Bridge in the four-day game. There were signs he was getting back to where he was," Geoff Miller, the national selector, told Sky Sports News. "We know what he is capable of doing, and when he puts on that England shirt we feel sure he will show exactly that and produce the goods and make it difficult for India.
Andrew Strauss and Andy Flower are big supporters of what Broad brings to the team - despite just eight wickets in the Tests against Sri Lanka - but the decision to drop him last week has shaken up the pecking order despite his being Twenty20 captain. Having retained his place in the squad he still faces pressure for a place in the final XI from Bresnan who played a vital role in the Ashes Tests at Melbourne and Sydney.
Bresnan missed the chance to build on his successful winter after he was sidelined by the recurrence of a calf injury at the start of the season, which meant Finn earned an opportunity against Sri Lanka when James Anderson missed the Lord's Test with a side strain. However, it was clear how highly England rate Bresnan when he was brought straight back into the one-day side for the Sri Lanka series having recovered from injury.
"Following the successful Test and ODI series against Sri Lanka we're pleased to be able to include Tim Bresnan in the Test squad after his excellent return from a calf muscle injury," Miller said. "Tim adds further bite to our pace attack along with James Anderson, Chris Tremlett and Stuart Broad, who has greatly benefitted from getting overs and wickets under his belt for Nottinghamshire during the week."
Bresnan took four wickets and hit 41 against Worcestershire in the County Championship while Finn was forced to sit out the round with Middlesex not having a game. Bresnan is also a steadier operator than Finn and will give Strauss control, which will be important in keeping a tight hold on India's strong batting order.
"Steven Finn has also benefitted from his time at county level in recent weeks and continues to press hard for Test selection," Miller said. "It's very pleasing to see the depth of quality around our bowling attack particularly with a challenging four-match Test series on the horizon."
Away from the competition for Broad's position the England side is set in stone after Eoin Morgan's steady returns against Sri Lanka. Strauss, meanwhile, was able to spend some valuable time in the middle for Somerset, against the Indians, at Taunton, where he made 78 following his lean time against Sri Lanka.
Squad Andrew Strauss (capt), Alastair Cook, Jonathan Trott, Kevin Pietersen, Ian Bell, Eoin Morgan, Matt Prior (wk), Stuart Broad, Graeme Swann, Chris Tremlett, James Anderson, Tim Bresnan
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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Plays of the Day from second ODI between South Africa and Pakistan, in Port Elizabeth
Plays of the Day from the third ODI between India and West Indies, in Kanpur