Wood set for recall, Anderson uses oxygen tank
Mark Wood looks certain to return to the England side for the fourth Investec Ashes Test at Trent Bridge, but England are hoping that the use of an oxygen tank can help James Anderson recover for the final Test at the Kia Oval.
Alastair Cook, the England captain, has confirmed that Wood is in "pole position" to replace Anderson in Nottingham and suggested he had come through all the necessary fitness tests with "flying colours."
"He has looked fit and ready," Cook said. "We will have a last check in the morning, but it looks really good for Woody."
Cook also revealed that Anderson had started using "an oxygen tank" in a bid to regain fitness ahead of the final Test, which starts on August 20.
"He's been working with the physios, going in oxygen tanks and all that kind of stuff," Cook said. "He's doing everything he can. He is a big miss for us as he gives us attacking options and control."
Anderson sustained a side strain during the third Test at Edgbaston and will be wearing an oxygen mask for around 80 minutes a day for the next week or so.
An ECB spokesman explained that there is anecdotal evidence that a boost in oxygen "speeds up recovery in muscle injuries" and that England were "exploring every avenue to get him fit for The Oval."
Chris Woakes, who might have returned to this squad had he not ruled himself out of contention after experiencing some pain in the knee on which he underwent surgery in April, also returned to action. Woakes had some fluid drained from the knee last week and declared himself fit for Warwickshire's Royal London match against Hampshire at Edgbaston.
George Dobell is a senior correspondent at ESPNcricinfo