England in India, 2005-06

Anderson loses Test place as Jones returns

Cricinfo staff

January 13, 2006

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James Anderson has lost his place in the Test squad © Getty Images
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James Anderson and Alex Loudon have been omitted from the Test squad to tour India, but they are the only changes from the party that lost 2-0 against Pakistan. However, the selectors have left one space free, which will be filled by a third spinner once the fitness of Ashley Giles has been assessed.

Simon Jones returns after recovering from surgery to the bone spur on his right ankle. He is due to spend ten days at the MRF Pace Academy, in Chennai, to continue his rehabilitation. Liam Plunkett's encouraging performances on his Test debut at Lahore, and in the following one-day series, have been enough to pip Anderson to the reserve pace bowling slot.

Anderson retains his place in the one-day squad but the end of Darren Gough's international career is a step closer with his omission. Vikram Solanki's stop-start career has again been halted with Ian Bell preferred, lending further weight to the theory that England still don't know their best one-day team.

The chairman of selectors, David Graveney, said: "Although we lost the series [in Pakistan], there were some encouraging individual performances from players who are new to Test cricket and we are keen to continue their development."

"With regard to injured players, Michael Vaughan and Ashley Giles both underwent operations before Christmas and their rehabilitation programmes are progressing according to plan. We do, however, intend to name an additional spinner in the Test squad once we have had an opportunity to further re-assess Ashley's fitness nearer to the time of our departure for India."

Graveney explained that the one-day squad was selected with a view to the World Cup: "Plunkett has made a promising start to his international career and is an emerging player with great potential. Bell has also been named in both squads as we believe his ability to bat in the top order will give us another option as we continue to plan for the World Cup in 2007.

"Solanki will be disappointed not to make the trip to India but he is still part of our plans for the future and is one of a number of players on the fringes of selection for the one-day squad."

Commenting on Gough's omission, he said that the performance of the younger seamers had encouraged the selectors to stick with them for India. "Gough asked the selectors not to consider him for the tour of Pakistan for personal reasons and we respected his wishes.

"With Plunkett and Anderson performing well in Pakistan, and Jones now available for selection again, the selectors feel the priority is for these players to gain as much experience of one-day cricket as possible, ahead of the World Cup, and as a result Gough misses out."

The news will not come as a surprise to Gough, who had earlier told BBC Sport that he was not expecting a recall. "I'm not a 20-year-old who's out there demanding a place. I'm mature and I can understand they want to go with the young guys.

"Of course I am disappointed because I still think I am one of the best bowlers at the end of a one-day match. You can't buy one of them at a local superstore - it takes years and years."

England Test squad Michael Vaughan* (capt), Marcus Trescothick*, Andrew Strauss*, Ian Bell*, Kevin Pietersen*, Andrew Flintoff*, Paul Collingwood*, Geraint Jones*, Matt Prior, Ashley Giles*, Shaun Udal, Liam Plunkett, Matthew Hoggard*, Simon Jones*, Steve Harmison*. *denotes 12-month central contract

One-day squad Michael Vaughan (capt), Marcus Trescothick, Andrew Strauss, Kevin Pietersen, Andrew Flintoff, Paul Collingwood, Ian Bell, Geraint Jones, Matt Prior, Ashley Giles, Ian Blackwell, Kabir Ali, Liam Plunkett, Simon Jones, Steve Harmison, James Anderson.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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