Swann hopeful over Anderson fitness
England's spinner Graeme Swann is confident that his team-mate James Anderson will be passed fit in time to face India in the fourth and final Test at The Oval on Thursday, after he experienced tightness in his right quadriceps in the aftermath of the team's innings-and-242-run victory at Edgbaston on Sunday.
Anderson, who tore through India's top order with each of the first four wickets to fall in their second innings at Edgbaston, has 18 wickets in the series to date and has risen to No. 2 in the world rankings.
However, he missed the second Test against Sri Lanka earlier in the season as a precaution, having sustained a side strain midway through the opening Test of the summer at Cardiff, and the Durham paceman, Graham Onions has been called into the squad as cover.
Swann, however, is confident that Anderson will be fit to lead the attack at The Oval, as England seek to cement their new No.1 status in Test cricket by completing a 4-0 whitewash against a demoralised Indian opposition. He was fit enough to take part in England's fielding drills during their practice session on Tuesday afternoon, but was not among the first group of bowlers in the nets.
"I honestly didn't know he was injured until he told me this morning that he's not going to play," said Swann. "Jimmy seemed fine to be. I'm sure it's just a bit of stiffness. I'm no physio or doctor, but he didn't seem to be limping from the car.
"I'm sure once he gets running around, he'll want to play because I know how well he's bowling at the minute," he added. "I know Jimmy. When he's doing well, he's hungry for the ball and he just wants to keep going. It's when he's not doing so well, he's more than happy for a week off."
If Anderson is not passed fit, England will have to choose between Onions and Steven Finn, after Chris Tremlett was once again ruled out by the back injury he sustained prior to the second Test at Trent Bridge. Whoever leads the attack for England, however, Swann is confident they will rise to the challenge.
"I think [Jimmy] would be a huge loss, like any of the seamers, but we thought that with Tremlett when he couldn't play at Trent Bridge," said Swann. "Up stepped Bressie [Tim Bresnan] and he's been unbelievable in the two games he's played. We have got vast stocks of fast bowlers at the minute. I'm not sure where they've all come from, but it's nice for us they have all arrived at the same time, because you can never have enough big fast bowlers."