England news April 9, 2012

Broad's injuries a concern - Flower


Andy Flower, the England team director, has said that Stuart Broad's recurring injury problems are a worry. However he is resigned to Broad linking up with the IPL if he recovers from the calf strain that ruled him out of the second Test against Sri Lanka and has admitted the event is a "tricky" subject.

It was the latest in a list of injuries for Broad over the last 18 months, starting with the stomach muscle strain that ruled him out of three Ashes Tests in Australia before a rib injury curtailed his World Cup campaign. Towards the end of the English season he then damaged his shoulder and missed the end of the India home series and Twenty20 matches against West Indies, plus the return contest in India during October which meant Graeme Swann was required as a stand-in T20 captain.

"It is a concern," Flower said. "He's one of the leaders in our attack and our T20 captain as well. But he'll be working hard to get back in readiness for the West Indies series."

Broad's workload is one of the highest among the England squad with him playing all three formats but he has a contract with Kings XI Punjab which Flower knows he will need to honour if his calf recovers. If he does join up with the tournament he will return home to play one County Championship match, against Middlesex, before the first Test against West Indies at Lord's on May 17. He was due to meet the ECB medical staff on Monday to assess his progress.

"The IPL is a tricky subject and a tricky time in the cricketing calendar, and I don't think there's a perfect answer there," Flower said. "My priority now is getting the guys ready for the West Indies series.

"He's contracted to his IPL side so if he's fit he'll go and play IPL and come back and play that first-class game prior to the West Indies series, as planned. If he's not fit enough to do that, and calf injuries can take a bit longer than some of the other muscle groups, he won't go."

Any England centrally contracted player who appears in the IPL - so that also includes Kevin Pietersen and Eoin Morgan - are monitored by the ECB's medical staff who keep in touch with the franchises to ensure any predefined programmes are adhered to and how any niggles are treated.

Playing the IPL would mean no significant rest period for Broad until at least after the World Twenty20 where he will be captain and even then it will be short as the team are due to start a four-Test series in India in November. However, on the flip side the tournament could be a useful chance to expand his game ahead of the World Twenty20 in September where England will defend their title. Broad also missed last year's IPL due to the rib injury he picked up at the World Cup.

Andrew McGlashan is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • John on April 11, 2012, 11:27 GMT

    @Meety on (April 11 2012, 00:47 AM GMT) I really don't think PC is good enough as a player right now to get in the England side. Swann possibly but he's ageing.

  • Andrew on April 11, 2012, 0:47 GMT

    @jmcilhinney - "...Who in that team has the qualifications to be captain but doesn't also play Tests and ODIs?" - not in the side, but I'd say Collingwood. == == == The only good news for Broad is that at least his injuries are not stress fractures. All the injuries he has had of late are of the kind that should heal fairly quickly or are not career threatening.

  • Prasanth on April 10, 2012, 16:38 GMT

    Yorkshire-86 - I am pretty sure Broad will be a sad man if his "kids" are not able to look after themselves, but I get the point.

  • John on April 10, 2012, 15:09 GMT

    @yorkshire-86, I'd hope by 2055 Stuart Broad's (currently hypothetical) children will no longer need him to provide food and shelter.

  • Randolph on April 10, 2012, 9:17 GMT

    Really hope he gets fit for the Ashes. No one likes to see a player injured. Especially Warner and Ponting, they will love to see him bowling his pies for them to dispatch to all parts!

  • A on April 10, 2012, 9:06 GMT

    @Yorkshire you make a valid point and everyone deserve to maximise on earning potential but at the expense of the long-term health of test cricket? Not so sure. @RandyOz keep dreaming son. We all gotta dream I guess. Right now Im keeping my fingers crossed you scrape a draw against the mighty Windies.

  • Dummy4 on April 10, 2012, 8:57 GMT

    If he is fit he should definitely play IPL. He has shown over the last couple of years just how skilful a bowler he is. He can still improve and playing IPL against some of the best batsmen in this format will help him and England. I just hope he gets games and a chance to bat as well. But the IPL teams are fickle when it comes to consistency of selection.

  • John on April 10, 2012, 8:33 GMT

    Tricky subject this. I feel Broad has been our best player in all 3 formats in the last 9 months or so. As for IPL , personally and selfishly I'd rather he didn't go. I'd rather if he was getting injured it would purely be from his exertions for England. Having said that , I can see things from Broad's point and if IPL are paying silly money then it us up to Broad. I have said many times about the 5 man bowling attack and one reason was having 3 pacemen would manage the workloads better. Also I felt Eng could have rested Broad (and others) totally from the ODIs in Pak which may have cost us the margin of victory or even the series but I'd have lived with that. However I think the latest injury was from treading awkwardly on a rope so no one could have foreseen that. One thing for certain is that no one can accuse Broad of lack of effort for his country.

  • John on April 10, 2012, 8:33 GMT

    @novelwolf on (April 10 2012, 02:38 AM GMT) I believe this is the 1st test series between the sides for 3 years so I don't see where the "too often" bit comes in.

  • Harvey on April 10, 2012, 6:53 GMT

    @novelwolf - I think it's to do with contracts signed between the ECB and TV companies for covering those Stanford matches. Why TV companies were interested in those games in the first place I have no idea, because the fans weren't. As for the subject of the article, it seems to me to be just another non-story aimed at trying to provide India's domestic T20 league with the oxygen of publicity. Stuart Broad is England's T20 captain. The World T20 in SL is coming up, so if some mug offers him a ludicrous sum of money to take part in a domestic T20 competition on the subcontinent, it's a no-brainer, isn't it? It's hardly as if it's a heavy workload, either. A maximum of 24 legal deliveries per day is less than he'd bowl in net practice with his county. It should HELP his recuperation if anything. Overseas players come to England to take part in the County Championship all the time, and the workload & risk of injury in that competition is way heavier than for a T20 knockabout.

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