England in New Zealand 2012-13

Broad admits heel a long-term problem

ESPNcricinfo staff

February 8, 2013

Comments: 16 | Text size: A | A

Stuart Broad celebrates his hat-trick, New Zealand XI v England XI, Twenty20, Whangarei, February 5, 2013
Stuart Broad claimed a hat-trick during the warm-up matches but four-over spells do not fully test his heel © AFP

Stuart Broad may have to live with his heel injury for the rest of his career, with England's Twenty20 captain admitting he and the medical staff will have to 'manage' the problem to keep him playing at the highest level.

Broad has not played since the second Test in Mumbai in November, where his 0 for 60 was his second consecutive wicketless Test and continued a disappointing end to 2012. Broad was subsequently dropped for just the second time in his career.

The heel problem prevented his return as captain for the T20 series and he also missed last month's ODIs, but he is back in the fold for the series in New Zealand. After a trip to Germany to be fitted with specially designed boots he claims he has felt good in training, and took a hat-trick in a warm-up game, but his admission that the problem is unlikely to go away is a cause of concern.

"It is going to be a long-term thing," Broad said ahead of the opening T20 in Auckland. "It is a laceration of the fat pad so is not going to go away overnight.

It is something I need to manage. It has been good these couple of weeks, I have found good ways to look after it. It is not going to go away with a week's rest or a year's rest."

Broad admits his career path as a fast bowler is an issue on account of the type of injury he has which suggested that he may have to be rested a certain periods.,

"If I did pretty much anything else in the world but bowl seam it would not be a problem, I don't feel it walking or running or batting - it is just fast bowling," he said. "I do not get too down about it. It is something I have to manage. We have a great management team on the physical side.

"We have been speaking to specialists all over the world trying to find out what they can do, but there is no operation or injection suitable for it. It is manageable at the minute.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by pom_don on (February 9, 2013, 9:17 GMT)

@RandyOz the 'club cricketer' did OK didn't he........England continue their inevitable slide uphill!

Posted by Moppa on (February 9, 2013, 5:04 GMT)

Some interesting and sensible comments here (with some predictable exceptions too). @jmcilhinney, I agree with your first post that it must be that he can't pound his foot down on the crease with the force needed to bowl at full pace (I also assume it must be his left heel). I wouldn't quite be as categorical as you, but if his pace is permanently down there is a real question as to whether his accuracy is sufficient for him to keep his place ahead of other pace options. I also agree with @landl47, if I was England I wouldn't muck around picking bowlers based on their batting ability (e.g. Woakes or Broad if his bowling is greatly limited), just pick Anderson, Finn, Swann and your next best bowler for the condition (Panesar? Meaker? Onions? Tremlett?) and get on with it.

Posted by A_Vacant_Slip on (February 8, 2013, 19:36 GMT)

Yea very funny RandyOZ. Let us check your "club cricketer" Broad. Oh yes Oval 2009... Broad 5/37 in Aus 1st Inning and 66 run in the match. Micheal Clarke make grand total of 3 run in that game. Now, which these is "club cricketer"....? but maybe you were taking pleasant snooze during this marvellous England victory?

Posted by RandyOZ on (February 8, 2013, 18:08 GMT)

With the failure of the so-called 'new wave' of South Africans, Broad is a big loss for England, despite being a club cricketer at best.

Posted by alwaysindia on (February 8, 2013, 15:16 GMT)

@ front foot lunge surely you dont mean WORLD CHAMPIONS. they haven's won one

Posted by landl47 on (February 8, 2013, 13:59 GMT)

Breaking down doesn't seem to be the issue here. He can play while carrying this injury. The question is whether he can bowl well enough to make the side. If he can then he's in, if not, then someone else will get a shot. There's no room for sentiment in professional sports.

When he's fit and bowling at his best, there's no doubt in my mind he's one of England's best 3 seamers. If he's less than 100%, there are others who are ready to replace him. Personally I wouldn't have Woakes in a 4-man attack, good cricketer though he is. Onions or, if he is fit, Tremlett would be better options- probably Onions in England and Tremlett in Australia.

However, let's hope Broad can get back to the form which destroyed India in 2011.

Posted by jmcilhinney on (February 8, 2013, 13:16 GMT)

@TripleCenturian on (February 8, 2013, 12:47 GMT), it does seem a bit silly to acknowledge that he will need rest and then keep him in all three formats so I have to agree with you there. It does seem like ODIs would be the one to go but, if England do go into the Ashes with a four-man attack, doing so with one bowler they know has a chronic condition seems very risky. I guess it depends on the likelihood of his breaking down during a match as opposed to his just having to play out a game with pain and then sit out the next one. With this hanging over Broad, playing Woakes as an extra bowler and batting him at #7 with Prior moving up to #6 may be a good option. The selectors obviously like Prior at #7 but they promoted him over Patel in SL so it's not unprecedented.

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (February 8, 2013, 13:09 GMT)

Broad needs to fight his way back into this skillful & champion English team, but English fans will smile at the knowledge of just how many awesome fast bowling options they have. And they're all ready to go in time for the back-to-back Ashes!

Posted by TripleCenturian on (February 8, 2013, 12:47 GMT)

He should firstly decide which formats of the game matter to him the most and then ditch at least one other version. Of course being T20 skipper may influence his decision but he only has to bowl four overs a game in this version anyway. I suggest he ditches the one day 50 over stuff to rest. With back to back Ashes its unlikely he will give up a test spot in the short term but Cook will have to manage his workload sensibly. In a four man attack you can be swiftly exposed if one person breaks down.

Posted by venkatesh018 on (February 8, 2013, 12:44 GMT)

Perhaps the break Graham Onions deserves in his luckless career. What a bowler to waste in the reserves !

Posted by Mitty2 on (February 8, 2013, 12:22 GMT)

If this is the reason for his dramatic drop in pace and form, and isn't an operable thing, broad may fall from international reckoning entirely. As @jmcilhinney states, at that pace, still not innocuous by any means, but easier, woakes with his swing would be a much better option.

But anyway, the previous comments are all seeming to believe this to be the end of broad, as all it states is that it's a long term thing. I doubt that, there would be numerous ways to cater and work around that particular heel so broad doesn't feel the effects whilst bowling

Mitchell starc is currently bowling at a constant of 145 km/h and has personally stated that he's bowling in pain with his long term ankle problem or 'spur'. I'm sure they could be completely different things and the connection could be completely irrelevant and stupid, as I know less than little about the matter, but again, I seriously doubt a player's career could be derailed by a heel injury

Posted by SurlyCynic on (February 8, 2013, 12:11 GMT)

It's a shame that he's injured but I won't miss his little tantrums.

Posted by jmcilhinney on (February 8, 2013, 11:31 GMT)

The fact that it won't go away overnight is not the end of the world. Other players have been forced to take a year off because of injury. If it's still not likely to heal fully in even that sort of time though, that is a big deal. I wonder what actually happens when it recurs. Does it just get too sore to bowl with normally or does the laceration actually split further or something else? He's obviously not the bowler he was and many have postulated that he may have been carrying an injury for some time and it sounds like that is the case. If he can't hit the ground as hard as he wants then it's no surprise that he can't bowl as fast as he wants. Given his recent returns, if he can't regain that pace then I don't think that he has an international future, which would be a shame. If that was the case then Woakes would be a better option because he's a much better batsman and a better bowler at that pace. The signs are good so far in NZ so here's keeping fingers crossed.

Posted by Tigg on (February 8, 2013, 11:15 GMT)

At least in the short term this should put him out of the test XI. With arguably better bowlers like Onions, Woakes and (when he returns) Tremlett around why risk a bowler breaking down? Especially in a four man attack.

A good player to have in the squad who can play the odd test, but at least in the short term limit him to T20 and OD cricket while they work out how best to manage the condition.

Posted by Selassie-I on (February 8, 2013, 10:47 GMT)

Huge shame if thisw curtails his career, still at a oung age, he could have been one of the best seamers going. Hopefully, it can easily be managed and he can continue, the rest periods and missing the odd series will do him good anyway and give others a chance.

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