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February 25, 2006
Cook and Anderson, part of the England A side touring the West Indies, had been put on stand-by to join the England squad in India as injuries and illness continue to hamper the senior tour. However, the need of the hour has forced the England management to press the red light button. The pair flew out of the West Indies, where the first Test is being played, and landed in the UK yesterday.
Andrew Walpole, the England team spokesperson, clarified the news at the start of the third day's play of the tour match at Vadodara. He did not confirm whether any of the current England squad will be returning home.
Michael Vaughan (knee), Paul Collingwood (back) and Simon Jones (virus) were ruled out of the current warm-up match against a Board President's XI, while Kevin Pietersen joined the casualty list after retiring hurt with back spasms. Liam Plunkett was also unable to bowl on the second day after picking up a bruised heel.
Cook was added to the England squad in Pakistan when Vaughan succumbed to his knee injury ahead of the first Test at Multan. He has already hit form on the A tour, scoring 101 in the warm-up match against an Antiguan XI. Anderson went wicketless, but towards the end of the one-day series in Pakistan showed signs of a return to form.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
Shorter tours don't allow you time to get into form, and domestic cricket isn't demanding enough