India v England, 2nd Test, Mumbai

Broad in Mumbai Test scare

George Dobell in Mumbai

November 22, 2012

Comments: 42 | Text size: A | A

Stuart Broad warms up in a training session, Ahmedabad, November 13, 2012
Stuart Broad's tough India tour continued when he missed training in Mumbai less than 24 hours before the start of the second Test © AFP
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England's hopes of fighting their way back into the series against India have been dealt another blow by the news that a throat ailment left Stuart Broad unable to train less than 24 hours ahead of the second Test in Mumbai.

Broad, who was described by an ECB spokesman as "under the weather", remained in the hotel and did not join his team-mates at training. His absence casts a serious doubt over his fitness for the game. England lost the first Test in Ahmedabad by nine wickets.

Ian Botham, a former England captain, had been among those to call for Broad to be dropped in Mumbai after a poor showing in the first Test, where he was out-bowled by both India seamers, Zaheer Khan and Umesh Yadev. He looked to have lost some pace and, as a consequence, lacked the potency to strike on pitches offering little. Since June, his bowling average is 48.54 and his batting average is 14.

England are already without Ian Bell, who has returned to England on paternity leave, and Steven Finn, who has a thigh injury. They were at least given some encouraging news when scans showed no serious injury to Finn. He will, as a consequence, remain in India and hopes to participate in the England Performance Programme squad's three-day game starting on November 27.

Broad's possible absence could well mean an opportunity for the uncapped Stuart Meaker, the 23-year-old Surrey quick, who was called into the squad only after Finn suffered injury in the first warm-up game, and who has impressed in training and in the warm-up game against Haryana.

Tim Bresnan played in the first Test but looked some way below his best, while Graham Onions has also struggled for rhythm on the tour. Meaker, with his extra pace and ability to swing the ball, could well find himself promoted if Broad does not fully recover.

Broad was also a doubt for the first Test after suffering a heel injury. While the England team management insisted his illness was not serious and that he remains in contention for the match, it must be considered a risk to select him for a game in which England may well field only two seamers.

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by The_bowlers_Holding on (November 23, 2012, 2:05 GMT)

I think this would be a blessing in disguise but somehow think SCJB will make a recovery and be selected, he has seemed jaded for sometime now. In fairness Onions should get a shout but Meaker would seem to offer the raw pace that might prove vital. Bairstow for Bell and Monty for Bres and lets see where we are. Hopefully England will put a high price on their wickets and not play silly shots and make it easier, here's to a good tight 5 day test, with the better team winning (as long as it is not India).

Posted by   on (November 23, 2012, 0:20 GMT)

where is chris tremlett i thought hes a good bowler they should give him a shot

Posted by Dravid_Pujara_Gravitas_Atheist on (November 22, 2012, 21:15 GMT)

I'm not surprised at all. Could see this excuse coming. Looks like he took the correct decision in excusing himself from further ignominy. His pace dropped significantly from the last time we toured England. Some injury he is hiding???

Posted by citizenkc on (November 22, 2012, 16:18 GMT)

This may well be a blessing in disguise. Broad is out of form and some fresh blood in the form of Meaker or Onions may be the medicine. Prior could hold his place in the team for his batting alone, so drop Patel and pick Panesar, and Bairstow or Morgan for Bell. On a related note, I think the Test number one spot has become a curse. First India, then England, and now South Africa are having a horrible time after reaching the top. Shows the difference between real number 1s (Aus and WI) and the fly by nights no.1. After the massacre at Adelaide, maybe India fans will feel a little better. If Steyn and Morkel are being treated like club cricketers, what chance did India have last year? If England can't do some serious rebuilding, Australia are on track to regain the Ashes next summer!

Posted by mikey76 on (November 22, 2012, 15:36 GMT)

Go in with Meaker. His pace and swing could unsettle the Indian top order. He's no mug with the bat either which is important considering we have a long tail now. I think England should now look at Woakes for the tour of NZ after Christmas. Bresnan needs to go back to Yorks and discover his nip again.

Posted by   on (November 22, 2012, 15:21 GMT)

"Under the weather", indeed! Under "beefy thunders" and "Cookie Clouds" !

Posted by   on (November 22, 2012, 15:19 GMT)

Smart cookie! Not Captain Cook; I mean Broad. He seems to have read the writing on the wall, just in time!

Posted by   on (November 22, 2012, 15:10 GMT)

Second bad news for India, in a week, in the pace department. First, their best pacer, Yadav, is injured. Second, an English pacer in poor form, Broad, is going to be replaced by a better bowler. Double Whammy!

Posted by GHemrajani on (November 22, 2012, 15:02 GMT)

So many English fans are asking for Broad to be dropped regardless of injury. That implies his performance has been sub-par for a long time. It intriques me that England management (Andy Flower) hasnt seen it yet. Perhaps it's time for Flower to go as well if he is not able to perform his selection job.

Posted by   on (November 22, 2012, 14:57 GMT)

Blessing in disguise for England. Onion can't be worse than Broad; in fact could be a better choice.

Posted by ParallelCongo on (November 22, 2012, 14:23 GMT)

@jb633 "least likeable side in international cricket..."..Dear sir, do we really care what you think of the Indian team? Talks are a dime a million, deeds- now that's something else. In days past, English teams used to blame their failures in India on cockroaches, crappy hotels, dust and germs. What's the excuse this time? Half of the English team comprises of players procured from South Africa and other Anglophile nations. The remaining half comprises of Asians..most of them want to play IPL in India and earn big bucks...so how about you asking them how liked/disliked India and the Indian team is?

Posted by CricketingStargazer on (November 22, 2012, 13:45 GMT)

@Rogerunionjack Blow? Back in 2005/06 we lost half the side through injury and then we lost various of their replacements leading to players like Owais Shah coming in a 6th or 7th reserve. Having lost the 1st Test we made the running in the 2nd and a very ordinary county spinner ran through India on the final afternoon of the series to give us an unexpected 1-1 result. Make the most of what you've got and, who knows, maybe Monty, or Meaker, or Bairstow, or... will be a hero come midweek next week. Sometimes sides do better in adversity than when things are going well.

Posted by Rogerunionjack on (November 22, 2012, 13:24 GMT)

Another blow - it's the last thing we need. But if Broad is out, it must, it should - be Onions. And of course Monty for Bell. And pray we win the toss.

Posted by   on (November 22, 2012, 13:03 GMT)

Agree wilt Callum and Willmot, a blessing, control, control, control, you miss, I hit. It's a simple mantra that works everywhere and at every level. Onions is probably worth more with the bat going on his SA tour performances too! Good news Bell is elsewhere too, the both of them have together failed to deliver when it matters of late.

Posted by whoster on (November 22, 2012, 12:45 GMT)

Broad has been bowling little more than lively medium pace over the past year, and it's a real concern. Knowing our selectors' propensity for negative and defensive decisions, it wouldn't surprise me if they flew out a 'bits and pieces' bowling all rounder to replace him. I think Graham Onions deserves another chance. He did very little wrong before he had a long injury lay off, and he's been fit and bowling well for a good while now. I'd be tempted to keep Patel in the side, because he had two bad decisions whilst batting, and he deserves another chance to show what he can do. My bowling attack would be Anderson, Onions, Swann and Panesar - with Patel as the back-up fifth bowler. Who cares that the tail will be longer - we've already got enough batsmen, and we should give them more responsibility to get runs.

Posted by jb633 on (November 22, 2012, 12:40 GMT)

God ever since the first day of the UAE tour the only news from our camp has been negative. Maybe it is because I have seen some really poor English sides but this has a feel of "back to the bad old days". Batsmen looking good in the nets, bowlers constantly breaking down, rifts between current and ex players, poor team selections, dropped catches, batting collapses and losing important tosses. It greatly depresses me that this has all come to the fore against the least likeable side in international cricket. I want something to change quickly because the ultra conservative policies are not working. Yes we had successes in 2010/2011 but what direction is this team going in. I said on the UAE tour that England have to be brave but we have made no bold decisions throughout this year. Bresnan ahead of Finn in the oval test and ahead of Monty in Ahmed. I can only see India racking up a big win in this series and this greatly depresses me as they are very average too.

Posted by Narkovian on (November 22, 2012, 12:36 GMT)

Save them having to drop him then won't it ?! I can't think of anyone in the team less likely to win a Test match for ENG in India. Which incidentally is the home of the " Sacred Cow " !!

Posted by scottnye on (November 22, 2012, 12:30 GMT)

i am really looking forward to seeing England ring a few changes selection wise. sometimes enforced changes turn out to be the ones that really count. I haven't seen much of Meaker, but he seems fast, aggressive and accurate (and he went to my school so I feel a touch of bias).

Drop Patel for Bairstow, Bell for Morgan , Broad for Meaker and Bresnan for Panesar. The top 6 + Prior must be relied on to bat long and ugly if necessary - if the ball continues to spin, i doubt the tailend will be able to do much with the bat anyway, so we may as well pick the strongest and most varied bowling attack we can.

Posted by wablo55 on (November 22, 2012, 12:27 GMT)

This is becoming the same as when the Indians toured England last year and their players were dropping like flies! What is it with these two countries and their inability to tour each other???

Posted by mikeyp147 on (November 22, 2012, 12:23 GMT)

Whether he's ill or not, Broad should not be playing. He's been woeful for as long as I care to remember and I for one am fed up of watching him serving up looping half-volleys/half-trackers to world-class batsmen who duly paste him all over the park. This is a blow, yes, but for the Indians, not us...

Posted by mikeyp147 on (November 22, 2012, 12:20 GMT)

Whether he's ill or not, Broad should not be playing. He's been woeful for as long as I care to remember and I for one am fed up of watching him serving up looping half-volleys/half-trackers to world-class batsmen who duly paste him all over the park. This is a blow, yes, but for the Indians, not us...

Posted by 2.14istherunrate on (November 22, 2012, 12:07 GMT)

There may be more to this than meets the eye; just as Philander's mysterious back injury has saved him a day to forget in Adelaide ( you gotta choose your games off wisely, eh Vernon?) maybe Broady knows something we don't. Though no doubt Meaker would approach a debut in Tests with considerable enthusiasm, there have to better places to make it like in NZ. Amused anyway to see how many English fans see Broad's absemce as a big big plus!!

Posted by Pritt32 on (November 22, 2012, 12:06 GMT)

Personally, I think Broad comes across as cocky. He cannot accept criticism from former greats. Yes, he did have a glorious summer last year, but the performance has declined particularly in the sub-continent. Just because Broad is a spearhead bowler, that does not mean his place is safe in the squad. He is injured at present and not really a blow on the basis of current form. England will need to shuffle their bowling attack, if they have any chance of beating India at home, which is not going to be easy.

Posted by jmcilhinney on (November 22, 2012, 11:59 GMT)

If Broad does get left out for whatever reason, I reckon Onions would feel rather hard done by if Meaker gets a game ahead of him. Not that I'm saying that that would be wrong but Onions has been waiting in the wings for a while and was picked ahead of Meaker for this tour so would expect to be the next in line. If England feel that they need the variety that Meaker's pace provides then that may be the way they go. That pace, which Broad and Bresnan in particular seem to lack at the moment, can still be a weapon in India, as demonstrated by Umesh Yadav against an Ian Bell who was looking better in the second innings but got an excellent fast inswinger.

Posted by CricketingStargazer on (November 22, 2012, 11:55 GMT)

@Nutcutlet Finn is different as his problem is muscular. Broad's is apparently a bacterial infection. Bowlers don't break down after 3 overs because their throat hurts. However, if as seems increasingly likely, England play only two seamers and three (!!) spinners, I would want him to feel 100% healthy when he comes in with the new ball. And if he can't give 8 fast, aggresive overs, bring in someone else who can. @igorolman, Onions has not bowled much on the tour and did not not threatening when he did. I always wondered if he was the right kind of bowler to take to India (he likes juice in the pitches and in the air) when you have bowlers like Toby Roland-Jones and even, as a dark horse, someone like Reece Topley as an investment for the future (I guess most people won't have heard of him as he played very little last year, but he was in the U19 WC team, is very tall and a future star).

Posted by   on (November 22, 2012, 11:33 GMT)

Dealt another blow? More like an absolute blessing in disguise. He was abysmal in the first test. His pace is frighteningly low to what it has been. Basically struggling to hit 83-84 mph and he's bowling everywhere as well. He was a big reason why England conceded so many runs as it's impossible to build any pressure if you're going at over 4 an over. He needs to recover fully, bowl himself back into a rhythm and increase his pace again as if he doesn't and he plays all the time for England, he becomes a liability

Posted by shaan77 on (November 22, 2012, 11:25 GMT)

I think broad needs some "rest", especially after a disappointing performance in the 1st test. Meaker could be the best replacement, and as far as england's batting is concerened prior should bat at the top order, no matter what the situation is. its would be difficult for england to bring out a positive result for themselves, but I definately expect a thrilling draw!

Posted by shaan77 on (November 22, 2012, 11:25 GMT)

I think broad needs some "rest", especially after a disappointing performance in the 1st test. Meaker could be the best replacement, and as far as england's batting is concerened prior should bat at the top order, no matter what the situation is. its would be difficult for england to bring out a positive result for themselves, but I definately expect a thrilling draw!

Posted by satish619chandar on (November 22, 2012, 11:17 GMT)

So, Bell and Broad are certainly out and Bresnan almost. Panesar SHOULD/WILL play. Second seamer? Meaker or Bresnan depends on what Mr.Andy thinks. Extra protection in tail or better bowler? Go for Meaker i would say just because he can do the job as a bowler which Bresnan will do as a bowling all rounder. Bresnan being a 40% bowler and 25% batsman adds 65% of value and Meaker with his extra pace and attacking bowler can add more than 70% value easily. Overall weightage will go to Meaker than Bresnan. But knowing Andy, he will go with Bresnan as Broad's batting also will be missed.

Posted by   on (November 22, 2012, 11:16 GMT)

Indians have never played Meaker , so he is the surprise weapon for England.

Posted by   on (November 22, 2012, 11:11 GMT)

Wouldn't be a bad thing to have Onions in - he's a good stump to stump bowler: probably better suited to these conditions.

Posted by Percy_Fender on (November 22, 2012, 11:02 GMT)

The story is so silmilar to what happened to India in England in the rainy summer of 2011. Maybe the No 1 ranking is jinxed as we are seeing in Australia at present.

Posted by Narbavi on (November 22, 2012, 10:58 GMT)

What's the fuss here? he was anyway gonna be dropped from the team for the second test, i would prefer meaker or onions as indians faced them, especially meaker

Posted by   on (November 22, 2012, 10:56 GMT)

Go large! Cook, Compton, Trott, Root, Bairstow, Prior, Bresnan, Swan, Anderson, Meaker, Panesar. Give the new ball to Meaker rather than Bresnan, but when the ball is 30 overs old let Bresnan have a go at getting it to reverse. If he is denied that opportunity because spinners are bowling all of the overs, then they might as well not have him and pick Morgan instead. This is the side that should be picked irrespective of the availability of Broad or Bell. When Finn is fit, he comes in for Bresnan. You have to be able to bowl a side out, and if the top 6 can't get the runs there's not point in being a bowler short so as to accommodate another non-test standard bat at 7. Root and Bairstow can't do worse than Bell and Peitersen, who knows they might turn out to show a modicum of intelligence in the conditions on the day.

Posted by brusselslion on (November 22, 2012, 10:39 GMT)

Finally some good news! Hopefully, not career/life threatening but serious enough to keep him out of the rest of the series.

Posted by igorolman on (November 22, 2012, 10:13 GMT)

Why Meaker? Onions is the next in line and has never let England down.

Posted by   on (November 22, 2012, 9:51 GMT)

My Team For England is : Cook,compton,trott,peterson,morgan,prior,bresnan,swan,meaker,anderson,panesar.Prior must bat up the order.3 fast bolwers and 2 spinners with peterson to follow is good team combination.

Posted by Munkeymomo on (November 22, 2012, 9:31 GMT)

Good news I guess. Hopefully nothing serious obviously. Would be great to see Meaker debut, get some pace into an attack that looked a bit stale in the first test. Would like to see Anderson replicate his form in the UAE in non-seam conditions. Bres, Broad, Bell out: Monty, Meaker, Morgan in. B's for M's.

Posted by   on (November 22, 2012, 9:30 GMT)

As Cook said about Finn, 'If he's not 100%, then he won't play.' Can we take then it that the same goes for Broad, despite the fact that he hasn't appeared to be anywhere near 100% for some while now? In fairness to Broad, I think that too much has been asked of him & he falls between three stools in consequence. Does this mean that Meaker gets his debut? If so, I'd hope to see him used as a shock bowler, not a stock trundler at 125-135 kph. Monty & Swann are going to have to do a lot of bowling in order to get the best out of Meaker. Let's hope Cook calls the toss correctly!

Posted by Haleos on (November 22, 2012, 9:28 GMT)

It would not be a massive blow to england considering his record of late. It might well be a blessing in dusguise. He has hardly ever performed well in the subcontinent.

Posted by Boston_Legal on (November 22, 2012, 9:18 GMT)

It's a blessing in disguise. Get Onions and Panesar in, and as Broad Jr is not playing the test, we do not need the backup for this fragile boy, so Bres should be shown the door too!

Posted by Nutcutlet on (November 22, 2012, 9:15 GMT)

As Cook said about Finn, 'If he's not 100%, then he won't play.' Can we take then it that the same goes for Broad, despite the fact that he hasn't appeared to be anywhere near 100% for some while now? In fairness to Broad, I think that too much has been asked of him & he falls between three stools in consequence. Does this mean that Meaker gets his debut? If so, I'd hope to see him used as a shock bowler, not a stock trundler at 125-135 kph. Monty & Swann are going to have to do a lot of bowling in order to get the best out of Meaker. Let's hope Cook calls the toss correctly!

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