Mumbai A v England XI, tour match, Mumbai

Cook, Prior rested for second outing

Alex Winter

November 2, 2012

Comments: 56 | Text size: A | A

Alastair Cook drives through the covers, India A v England XI, tour match, Mumbai, 2nd day, October 31, 2012
Alastair Cook's century in the opening game allows him the chance to rest for the second tour match © Associated Press
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Alastair Cook will be rested for England's second tour match against Mumbai A on Saturday with Stuart Broad, named England vice-captain last week, leading the side in his first appearance on the tour of India.

Graeme Swann and Matt Prior will also also rested, with Jonny Bairstow taking over as wicketkeeper having passed a fitness test. Steven Finn was already ruled out with a thigh injury with Graham Onions likely to replace him.

The absence of Cook, who scored 119 in the draw with India A, will give Joe Root the opportunity to open the innings with Nick Compton, presenting the potential of a head-to-head for a spot in the first Test on November 15.

Compton was picked ahead of Root for the opening match of the tour at the Brabourne Stadium but made a third ball duck. He may be the preferred partner for Cook in the opening Test but needs to prove his form to secure his place in Ahmedabad.

"With Ian Bell going home for the birth of his first child, we've got to make sure that the batter who's going to come in for the second Test gets some practice in," Cook, who was satisfied with a "really good first week" on Indian soil, said. "We're trying to give everyone as much game time as we can. That is the idea of these next two games, to make sure we get as many people as possible some practice."

Wicketkeeper Prior is the other player set to be rested for the match at the DY Patil Sports Academy, with Bairstow, the other keeper in the squad, replacing him. Bairstow picked up a thigh injury but passed a fitness test allowing Prior to rest ahead of the first Test.

England's other confirmed change is out of necessity. Finn will not take part having left the field on the first morning of the draw with India A with a thigh strain. A scan revealed his injury is not serious but his place in Ahmedabad will be in doubt if he does not recover in time for England's final warm up match, a four-day fixture against Haryana.

Finn's injury potentially leaves a spot available in England's preferred three-man pace attack. Onions will stake his claim by replacing Finn with Broad's inclusion allowing James Anderson, who sent down 24.1 overs in the opening match, to rest.

Onions returned from what was once considered a career-threatening back injury in 2010 to make his England comeback in the third Test against West Indies at Edgbaston in June. He will hope to stake a claim for inclusion in the first Test should Finn not recover. Tim Bresnan, who took four wickets and scored 33 not out, will also be in contention to replace Finn in the first Test.

Finn's injury, and the pitch in Ahmedabad, may also require England to consider the balance of their side. "Clearly balance is going to be very important," Cook said. "We're going to have to be able to adapt to whatever surface we're going to play on. Whether we play two spinners or three seamers, we're going to have to try and find the best balance, which we feel will give us the best chance of winning. We've got to be flexible in selection."

England are likely to utilise Samit Patel at No. 6, his century in the opening match confirming his value. His left-arm spin will compliment specialist spinner Swann, who will enter the first Test one wicket short of Jim Laker's tally of 193 wickets - the most by an England offspinner.

"There's always pressure on the spinner when you play in India, because people assume all the wickets will be big turners," Swann said. "You've just got to deal with that in your own way, because we know that a lot of the Test wickets over here are exceptional batting surfaces - at least to start, and then turn later on.

"It's not a lot different to other places. Often in the first innings you have to take a more defensive role and support the seamers a bit more and then later on in the game, if there is turn and bounce, then of course you come into your own. It's a pressure that's not alien to a spin bowler; if you're not used to that, you shouldn't really be bowling spin."

Alex Winter is an editorial assistant at ESPNcricinfo

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© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by JG2704 on (November 4, 2012, 9:54 GMT)

@John H Chambers on (November 04 2012, 06:37 AM GMT) Yeah , I was meant to mention about that myself. Having just got back into the side after all the probs it seems strange to omit him after 1 inns which was not particularly convincing.

Posted by zenboomerang on (November 4, 2012, 9:35 GMT)

@JG2704 :- "Is it a case of great minds thinking alike here or fools seldom differing?"... If I was an American I'd plead the 5th amendment - lol... But maybe your selectors are thinking that by putting Broad into a senior position he will take more seriously his role within the team?... It is probably why Watson is the Oz VC as he & Clarke are the same age & CA are just waiting for one of the younger guys to come through & stand up in 3-4 years time... Also Cook & Broad are only 18 months apart, so I don't think he will have any long term role as the England captain - Cook could easily play Tests for another 6-8 years...

Posted by   on (November 4, 2012, 6:37 GMT)

Why no mention of PIETERSEN's being rested????

Posted by A_Vacant_Slip on (November 3, 2012, 22:27 GMT)

@Nampally - what are you talking about "Last time England was in India under KP they lost 5-0 & last year under Strauss they lost by the same margin...." Strauss wasn't even on the ODI tour to India last year because he had retired from ODI. And how could KP lose the test series 5-0 when there were ONLY TWO test match...??? What is this thing about constantly mixing up test match and ODI. THEY ARE NOT THE SAME. Last year on the England ODI tour to India England test regular such as Anderson, Broad, Strauss, Prior WERE NOT double underline double repeat NOT on the ODI tour, so to attempt to compare the performance of that ODI team to the regular England test team is just yet another mark of utter desperation. Good luck with it. And BTW @Nampally - you never did manage to explain to me that other constant excuse about India injury in England last year? Are you really telling me that Tendulkar, Dravid, Laxman, Dhoni, Gambir, Sewhag... were actually replacement? If so - then for whom - ?

Posted by JG2704 on (November 3, 2012, 22:17 GMT)

@zenboomerang on (November 03 2012, 02:19 AM GMT) Is it a case of great minds thinking alike here or fools seldom differing?

Posted by JG2704 on (November 3, 2012, 22:17 GMT)

@Nampally on (November 02 2012, 21:15 PM GMT) Funny how you only ever notice the England fans who sledge ? I wonder if you'll ever be brave enough to tell some of your own guys to cool it. @GerrardLK on (November 02 2012, 17:08 PM GMT) Pretty pointless getting carried away at this stage.

Posted by JG2704 on (November 3, 2012, 22:16 GMT)

@Ronita on (November 03 2012, 00:30 AM GMT) Monty is being given a chance in this game

Posted by JG2704 on (November 3, 2012, 22:16 GMT)

@markatnotts on (November 03 2012, 12:18 PM GMT) I guess the guy has a sense of humour as indicated with the user name.

Posted by JG2704 on (November 3, 2012, 22:16 GMT)

@reality_check27 on (November 03 2012, 11:30 AM GMT) re "please check te stats and see england home record its the most poor record that any team can have at home apart from Bangladesh" - England went unbeaten from 2007-2012 at home so I guess we'll have to take your word for it that we are worse at home than all those other nations. Or maybe not.

Posted by MattyP1979 on (November 3, 2012, 20:18 GMT)

Eng to win the series 4-0 (again). Ind being at home (again, now and forever) might not lose 3 by an innings this time, only 2. Ind fans what do Eng have to fear exactly? Pensioners armed with the bat or your much vaunted bowling unit? Or is it your reknown expertise in the field. Pffft. Ind again to do us a favor by putting us back on top of the world.

Posted by Cpt.Meanster on (November 3, 2012, 16:41 GMT)

I feel the Mumbai A team are playing WONDERFUL. It may look England are in a good position but actually it's far from that. It's all so surprising to me. I expected England to score over 400 in a day just losing 2 or 3 wickets utmost. But to lose 5 wickets for a score of just over 300 is not a very good show by the mighty English batting. Mumbai A are not even playing with their regular 'A' side. A lot of young kids and 4 of them making their debut in first class cricket. So I wouldn't be too happy about England's batting this time around. Yes, Bairstow and Patel played very well. But the rest are struggling. Who is Nick Compton ? Why is he even on this tour ? Now we have talk about Joe Root. This gets even more interesting with every day.

Posted by brittop on (November 3, 2012, 12:31 GMT)

@Paras Rishi; @Bruisers: I'll point out again that several South African batsmen got out cheaply to a very inexperienced Somerset attack and they only managed a toal of 282/9. Didn't do them much harm.

Posted by markatnotts on (November 3, 2012, 12:18 GMT)

I never said ant different to what you just said re England in India in last 30 years. I do read past records. Pleas don't put words in my mouth. Also where did I say England are going to win 4 - 0? in a different article I predicted 2 1 to India or 1 - 1. And for anyone to say England have the worst home Test record of anyone bar Bangladesh is ridiculous. Some people just can't talk with logic and balance on this website.

Posted by Bruisers on (November 3, 2012, 11:49 GMT)

England fans are jumping all over the place thanks to Bairstow's facesaving hundred against a second-grade club team with four debutants. But hey! England haven't yet played a specialist spinner on this tour. Good luck when you do face one :)

Posted by reality_check27 on (November 3, 2012, 11:42 GMT)

wow gerrard and front foot lunge well england will lose in india like they have for 30 years onlt managed to win a test match that is like england will have to beat us 4-0 for next 8 to 9 tours to england to match that record and when u said england should have there club team play i think thats a good idea i hope they will give us a good fight as your international team is so poor that it can only manage to win 1 test match in 30 years. please comment get the stats right and facts in place just dont comment because u can click on the section and u can comment we have not ben beaten at home since 2004 while u say that ur team plays fast bowling an swing well please check te stats and see england home record its the most poor record that any team can have at home apart from bangladesh

Posted by reality_check27 on (November 3, 2012, 11:35 GMT)

markatnotts no matter what u say england has only won 1 test match in india in last 30 years eveen the same had been said by english captain cook please check the stats i get suprised by the attitude of poms even after such a poor record in india u still out here and try to make this look like no other in worlld cricket can beat u strange not to mention u lost to india in 2007 at home and lost to soutafrica at home twice in last 6 years big talks ehhh

Posted by reality_check27 on (November 3, 2012, 11:35 GMT)

markatnotts no matter what u say england has only won 1 test match in india in last 30 years eveen the same had been said by english captain cook please check the stats i get suprised by the attitude of poms even after such a poor record in india u still out here and try to make this look like no other in worlld cricket can beat u strange not to mention u lost to india in 2007 at home and lost to soutafrica at home twice in last 6 years big talks ehhh

Posted by   on (November 3, 2012, 11:32 GMT)

Bairstow in for Bell, discuss.

Posted by reality_check27 on (November 3, 2012, 11:30 GMT)

wow gerrard and front foot lunge well england will lose in india like they have for 30 years onlt managed to win a test match that is like england will have to beat us 4-0 for next 8 to 9 tours to england to match that record and when u said england should have there club team play i think thats a good idea i hope they will give us a good fight as your international team is so poor that it can only manage to win 1 test match in 30 years. please comment get the stats right and facts in place just dont comment because u can click on the section and u can comment we have not ben beaten at home since 2004 while u say that ur team plays fast bowling an swing well please check te stats and see england home record its the most poor record that any team can have at home apart from bangladesh

Posted by Pane on (November 3, 2012, 11:23 GMT)

@Green_Seamer.England r 323/5 against MumbaiA.And thats not a thrashing by any means.Go n check the score again.LOL Cmon India you need a Whitewash and England have enough paint for that.

Posted by eyballfallenout on (November 3, 2012, 11:09 GMT)

mumbai bowling 5 medium pacers, good spirit there.

Posted by markatnotts on (November 3, 2012, 10:58 GMT)

This is a funny "thrashing" for England at 278 for 5. Still I have never been one for making rash statements after one hours play. Also I don't recall England playing 5 Test series the last two Test series England played in India. My understanding was we drew 1-1 in 2006 and lost 1-0 in 2008. Hardly 5 0 thrasings, but then I don't mix and match ODI and Test results to suit my own prejudices.

Posted by   on (November 3, 2012, 10:30 GMT)

Mumbai A team has FOUR players making First Class debut against England, yet England National Team is struggling!

Posted by Green_seamer on (November 3, 2012, 6:43 GMT)

@Gerrard LK England are getting thrashed by a Mumbai A team , forget About the Indian or even the Mumbai team.. I actually hoped for a close & exciting series , but as things look as of now , England are looking like they will be whitewashed 4-0

Posted by Akshita29 on (November 3, 2012, 6:38 GMT)

@monita Monty cant improve his batting but he has to improve his fielding . Atleast he should not drop catches like he did in Srilanka .............

Posted by   on (November 3, 2012, 3:13 GMT)

I hope they should show these matches as they show pre ashes prep ..! It's a big series..! And u need to see who is employing good technique who is not ..!

Posted by zenboomerang on (November 3, 2012, 2:19 GMT)

@JG2704... Yes I have been one of a number of posters wanting Prior as VC - it just seems so logical... Prior is unlikely to lose his spot in the forseeable future, less likely to get injured than a seamer, he's a good team man & standing behind the stumps is in the best position to see how effective the bowlers are performing... "If" Broad gets a high grade injury he mucks up the team leadership & while I've also been a fan of him, his recent form hasn't been stellar...

Posted by samincolumbia on (November 3, 2012, 2:17 GMT)

@GerrardK - English club level team would mean England playing with 11 englishmen...that would be so refreshing!

Posted by maddy20 on (November 3, 2012, 1:45 GMT)

@GerrardLK SLs test cricket record in last 30 years. Wins in India-0, Wins in Aus-0, Wins in England-1, Wins in SA-1, Wins in WI-1, Wins in NZ-3(Lost 9). SL has never won a test series in any major test playing nation other than Pakistan and you are making fun of India?

Posted by jmcilhinney on (November 3, 2012, 1:34 GMT)

@Ronita on (November 03 2012, 00:30 AM GMT), you might wait until they actually do leave Monty out before talking about what a mistake they've made. If you believe that it would be a mistake to do so then by all means say so but, given that Swann will not be playing this second game, it's a given that Monty will be. They haven't picked the team for the first Test yet so it's a bit premature to say that they ARE making a big mistake.

Posted by The_bowlers_Holding on (November 3, 2012, 1:34 GMT)

Ronita it is kind of difficult to read your lips as we cannot see your lips :)

Posted by Ronita on (November 3, 2012, 0:30 GMT)

I think England is making big mistake in leaving out Monty. You can't depend on little bit of batting and little bit of bowling by Samit thats a plain stupidity. Samit will be a failure both with batting and bowling read my lips. Monty on other hand should only concentrate in bowling @ this stage no point of learning batting.

Posted by Cpt.Meanster on (November 2, 2012, 22:39 GMT)

@CricketingStargazer: I am not sure if I understand what you meant in your first sentence. Who is miserable here ? I thought both teams had positives from that game. England's batting was overall okay, but not too great, especially against a bowling attack that's second string along with 2 part time spinners in Yuvi and Raina. What's important for them is that Cook has some runs along with Patel and Prior. India A on the other hand could have batted a bit more circumspectly. They were aggressive and reckless. I was really impressed by the bowling of both teams though. More so at India A, because they are so inexperienced, and young. To restrict England to just a lead of 50 in such good batting conditions is outstanding. But cannot say anything more than that. The next 2 games will be watched closely by everyone. Tour cricket has never been so popular.

Posted by CricketingStargazer on (November 2, 2012, 22:06 GMT)

Meanster, when the top 7 (all batters) manage 2x100 and 2x50, "miserable" takes on a whole new meaning! :-) It would have been astonishing if all 7 had managed at least a 50. And, India A's overloaded batting made a bit of a meal of "saving" the match on the last afternoon. Not a great way to put pressure on the senior team. It's a good start for England, no more, but seeing Tim Bresnan get his mojo back may be the most important piece of the puzzle for England.

Posted by Cpt.Meanster on (November 2, 2012, 21:59 GMT)

@Nutcutlet: Oh yeah, India are DEFINITELY taking this series seriously. It's a warning to England in many ways. I am sure the 8-0 away loss has hurt India's reputation big time. Many of the Indian players are already playing for their respective state teams in Ranji Trophy. So they all mean business, no doubt. It will be a close and competitive series without doubt. A solid England team against a young, and rebuilding Indian team. Many careers will be made or broken come the new year. Now I have to find a highlights package so that I can be entertained as well.

Posted by   on (November 2, 2012, 21:20 GMT)

all those indian haters going to crow!!!

Posted by JG2704 on (November 2, 2012, 21:15 GMT)

It seems a strange decision for the captain to rest himself just a game into his tenure as full captain ahead of such an important series although I like it that Root and Nick will have exactly the same conditions etc to compare performances. I'd also like to see some bowling changes. I totally agree with Onions being given a game at the expense of Jimmy (as Jimmy is nailed on for a game and it'd be good to see how Onions does in relation to Broad). I don't agree with Broad being vice captain as (despite me being a big fan) his form has been patchy and I don't think he should be assured of his place. As others have said Prior is a better choice and he's in everyone's Eng side so no controversy there. Also not sure about Bell . His record in SC has not been good anyway and with a new baby on the way I wonder if his mind may be elsewhere and he could have had the whole series off? I feel the wrath of a certain fan straight away.

Posted by Nampally on (November 2, 2012, 21:15 GMT)

Some of the Indian Fans are once again getting ruffled by childish sledging from GerrardKL & Front-Foot-Lunge. Just FYI guys, Captain Cook has already stated that NO English team has beaten India on the Indian soil in 30 years! Last time England was in India under KP they lost 5-0 & last year under Strauss they lost by the same margin.Someone may be singing their Swann song while geting cooked! Honestly though, why not wait till 15 Nov. for the series to start & let the deeds speak louder than sledging.

Posted by JG2704 on (November 2, 2012, 21:14 GMT)

@mikey76 on (November 02 2012, 16:17 PM GMT) re - "Good selection by England, pointless just making Compton the opener if he's not in good nick" - Was that a deliberate play on words?

Posted by jmcilhinney on (November 2, 2012, 20:56 GMT)

@lararichards on (November 02 2012, 18:59 PM GMT), it's not about the players being rested. That rest is just a side effect of the fact that other players are being given a run. Did you read the story at all? Cook specifically said that they want to ensure that everyone has had a run so that they are ready if they need to step in, which makes perfect sense. They could give their preferred XI all three warmups but then, if someone gets injured or is out of form, someone else has to come in completely cold. The only way to give everyone some game time is to give everyone some rest.

Posted by Nutcutlet on (November 2, 2012, 19:57 GMT)

There's a lot of meticulous planning in evidence here: Flower the strategist is at work & these warm-up matches may well prove their true value when the Test series gets underway. India too must be taking the preparation for this series very seriously as India as much as England needs to show that they are not a side in prolonged decline. At last, some real, grown-up cricket is in the offing! A close & competitive series is likely. Let's hope that the crowds roll in when the real business begins.

Posted by Cpt.Meanster on (November 2, 2012, 19:55 GMT)

@GerrardLK: Speaking of competitiveness, the Sri Lankan weather is a lot competitive than your cricket board who simply don't know when to schedule a cricket series. Enjoy the rain !!!

Posted by Cpt.Meanster on (November 2, 2012, 19:54 GMT)

@Front-Foot-Lunge: Yes Cook was very good. But no need to get carried away here. The rest of your batsmen were miserable including KP against a second string Indian bowling attack. So nothing to get all pumped up. It's only gonna get tougher from here.

Posted by   on (November 2, 2012, 19:24 GMT)

Where is Lakshimipathy Balaji???

Posted by   on (November 2, 2012, 19:14 GMT)

English Team looks so much better then the indians it would be astonishing if england lose the series Good chance for Englishmen to make some records and whitewash indians

Posted by gnanzcupid on (November 2, 2012, 19:08 GMT)

cook cooked india????haha .rofl. lets see on nov 15.wait for the main picture

Posted by lararichards on (November 2, 2012, 18:59 GMT)

How on earth can you have players rested after one game into a tour? Both Cook and Prior didn't play in the T20 World Cup so have had a break. The whole point of these games is to get in nick and used to local conditions. The complaint for years was that England started test series under cooked. Now enough warm games are arranged and what do they do. Give players a rest. You couldn't make it up.

Posted by jonahv on (November 2, 2012, 17:57 GMT)

@ GerrardLK : bro we will see ok..... after 2 months dont cry that ohhh they had a spiner friendly wicket ok???? if india lost to englnad..... now its your turn baby... wait and watch.. dnt say anything....

Posted by Criketanand on (November 2, 2012, 17:51 GMT)

GerrardLK Front-Foot-Lunge, very true. lets wait and watch and not cook the tests prior to it starting and lets not write swan songs before a ball is bowled. as yet of last time england played India in India albiet in one dayers they got thrashed , was a year ago i think

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (November 2, 2012, 17:10 GMT)

"Cook, Prior rested for second outing": As Cook COOKED India and Swann was quality, this decision makes alot of sense. India will breath a sigh of relief.

Posted by GerrardLK on (November 2, 2012, 17:08 GMT)

England can rest every one & play their club level team against India. Then we can see some competitive cricket. You know what i mean..........

Posted by PPD123 on (November 2, 2012, 17:03 GMT)

Cook's comments are mature and shows he is going to be a good leader. Knowing the conditions is only a small part, it will come down to execution. This is where the form of KP and Bell will be the key. Cos both use their feet and also attack the spinners. Test matches in India generally tend to go through the motion for 2 1/2 days and then suddenly burst into action from end of day 3 onwards. 1 bad session will define the result of the test match. India should prepare dry pitches and challenge Eng thats their best bet, but with dry surface, comes reverse swing... so I feel it is a two way sword... anyways the 1st couple of test will set the tone. If India get a stronghold... I see them winning it 3-1

Posted by TATTUs on (November 2, 2012, 17:02 GMT)

Does that mean Rohit Sharma doesnt get a chance? Well, its a shame, this guy should play test cricket instead of ODIs and T20s.

Posted by   on (November 2, 2012, 16:17 GMT)

I'd like to see Morgan get a chance in one of the tour games.

Posted by mikey76 on (November 2, 2012, 16:17 GMT)

Good selection by England, pointless just making Compton the opener if he's not in good nick. Whoever looks like he's middling the ball and moving his feet well should get the nod. Hopefully Finn can return for the final warm up along with Panesar and Morgan then we have all our bases covered. Would love to see Onions bowl well, I think he will ask a lot of questions of the Indian top order, but then I love Broads aggression and useful batting. Tough choices ahead.

Posted by phoenixsteve on (November 2, 2012, 16:02 GMT)

It seems like some sensible decisions are being made and giving squad members an opportunity. Onions has the potential to rip through Indian batting and if he really fires the selectors could be in a quandry if a fit again Finn is available? I'd like to see Swann rested too and Monty given a chance. The prospect of Monty in form on a turner would be quite a sight. Let's hope for a double hundred opening stand between Root and Compton....... (could happen!)... COME ON ENGLAND!!!

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