Bresnan chases early return

England

Seamer Tim Bresnan has targeted a berth in England's XI for the first Ashes Test in Brisbane in November, despite exclusion from the 17-man squad.

Seamer Tim Bresnan has targeted a berth in England's XI for the first Ashes Test in Brisbane in November, despite exclusion from the 17-man squad.

Bresnan has not been named in the touring party, but will travel to Australia amid rehabilitation from a back injury endured earlier this year. The uncapped Ben Stokes, Boyd Rankin, meanwhile, have been called up to bolster the batting ranks.

The Zimbabwe-born Gary Ballance and the inexperienced Michael Carberry, too, have been included. All-rounder Chris Woakes, fast bowler Graham Onions and spinner Simon Kerrigan, however, were excluded.

"The recovery is going really well," the <i>Bradford Telegraph and Argus</i> quoted Bresnan as saying. "Fingers crossed, I've not felt it the injury since three days after I did it.

"It never even felt like a stress fracture to be fair. But obviously the scans showed one up. I've just got to roll with it and do the rehabilitation to the letter.
"We fly to Australia on the 23rd of October and then we'll build it up back to bowling from there.

"Hopefully if all goes well in the first couple of sessions, I'll do a few roll throughs and see how it feels. Then I'll progress it as you would going on any tour. Fingers crossed, depending on warm-up games and stuff like that, I'll be available for selection from the outset I think.

"What the medical staff are saying is it's not to be rushed. We're in a position where it's going to be played by ear. As much as I understand it's touch and go for Brisbane, thereafter there's definite possibilities."

The first Test will get underway in Brisbane on 21 November. Adelaide, Perth, Melbourne and Sydney will host fixtures two, three, four and five respectively.

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