NOTTINGHAM, England, (Reuters) – England paceman Chris Tremlett is a fitness doubt for the second test which starts on Friday while opponents India will be without their number one swing bowler Zaheer Khan.
Zaheer sustained a hamstring injury on the first day of his team’s first-test defeat at Lord’s and India are hoping he will be fit to return for the third game in the four-match series in Birmingham next month.
Tremlett bowled briefly in practice on Thursday morning before pulling out of the session with a hamstring problem. He then managed a handful of deliveries off one stride on his return before leaving again.
“He has this hamstring niggle,” England captain Andrew Strauss told reporters at Trent Bridge.
“We are very confident he will be fine but because there is such a short turnaround in between the two test matches we might have to wait until tomorrow morning until we are 100 percent sure one way or another.”
All-rounder Tim Bresnan, left out for the first test, is standing by to replace Tremlett.
“Tim Bresnan certainly has not let anyone down when he’s played for us,” Strauss said.
“He was outstanding in Australia in the winter and I think he is getting better and better so in many ways he is unfortunate not to be playing at the moment.”
The underlying prize from the test series is the battle for number one status in the world rankings.
Number three England need to win by at least two tests to leapfrog South Africa and topple top-ranked India.
“The number one situation is very secondary to us winning the series,” Strauss said. “Having gone 1-0 up, if we can make it 2-0 here obviously we will be in a brilliant position.”
India are likely to replace left-armer Zaheer with Shanthakumaran Sreesanth.
“It’s always good to have Zaheer in the side because he’s our most experienced bowler especially when it comes to England where he played county cricket,” said captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni.
“It’s a bit disappointing not to have him in the 11 but this is something that is beyond our control.”
England: Andrew Strauss (captain), Alastair Cook, Jonathan Trott, Kevin Pietersen, Ian Bell, Eoin Morgan, Matt Prior, Stuart Broad, Graeme Swann, James Anderson, Chris Tremlett or Tim Bresnan.
India (probable): Mahendra Singh Dhoni (captain), Abhinav Mukund, Gautam Gambhir, Rahul Dravid, Sachin Tendulkar, VVS Laxman, Suresh Raina, Harbhajan Singh, Praveen Kumar, Ishant Sharma, Shanthakumaran Sreesanth.