The Investec Ashes 2015 July 31, 2015

Wood, Woakes, Footitt - who will replace Anderson?

Mark Wood played the first four Tests of the summe © PA Photos

Mark Wood
Age 25, Tests 4, Test bowling average 39.21
The overwhelming favourite to replace Anderson. Wood looked to have secured a long-term place in the side after playing the first four Tests of the summer and impressing with his pace and his ability to swing the ball. Fears over how he would react to his workload were confirmed, though, when he reported a sore ankle after a slightly jaded showing at Lord's. He has remained with the England squad and, while he is not currently deemed fit, is confident of being 100% ahead of Trent Bridge. He is not expected to play another game before then.

Mark Footitt
Age 29, Tests 0
Footitt was a member of the squad taken to Spain for a pre-series training camp and has continued to bowl well in county cricket, where he has taken 50 Championship wickets this season at an average of 23.64. Perhaps because those are Division Two wickets they appear to have been discounted a little and, aged 29, time is not on Footitt's side. But the left-armer bowls with pace, swings the ball and knows Trent Bridge well having been on the staff at Nottinghamshire for several years. England may be reluctant to bring someone in to such a high-profile match on debut, though it worked pretty well with Jonathan Trott in 2009.

Chris Woakes
Age 26, Tests 4, Average 52.16
Probably the closest like-for-like replacement for Anderson, Woakes might well have been favourite to replace him had he played a little more cricket this season. As it is, though, he has only played two first-class games this year as he comes back from a variety of injuries. He trained with England ahead of the Edgbaston and impressed with his pace. But he was deemed to be just a little short of his best in terms of control and may have to wait a little longer for a recall.

Liam Plunkett
Age 30, Tests 13, Average 37.46
Plunkett might well consider himself somewhat unfortunate. Despite developing a reputation as perhaps the quickest bowler in the Championship (Tymal Mills may be quicker but has to be considered a limited-overs only bowler these days), he has not played a Test since July 2014 and has only played two Championship matches this season due to injuries and a brief suspension. He may well win a recall to the England squad, but it seems unlikely he will make the XI.

Jack Brooks
Age 31, Tests 0
A fine bowler with impressive accuracy, the fact that Brooks' first-class career started so late - he was 25 when he made his debut - may prove to be his undoing. He remains hugely effective at county level, with 57 first-class wickets at 21.13 apiece for Yorkshire this season. He is unlikely to be called up, but if he did he wouldn't let England down.

Chris Rushworth
Age 29, Tests 0
Nobody has more wickets in first-class cricket this season than Rushworth. But those 69 victims at an average of 18.63 ( he also took 55 in 2013 and 65 in 2014) are sometimes not given the worth they deserve as Rushworth plays his home games on a Durham surface that offers an unusual amount of assistance to seam bowlers. It is true that he lacks the pace of most Test bowlers, but he takes wickets away from home, too (he claimed nine at Southampton recently), and is every bit as quick as Terry Alderman or Chaminda Vaas. He remains a most unlikely choice but, on typical English county pitches - and they are not always the same at Test level - he is a dangerous bowler.

George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

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