ENG vs IND: Stuart Broad ruled out of series with calf injury

Broad underwent an MRI scan in London on Wednesday (August 11) that revealed the tear.

Stuart Broad
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Stuart Broad. (Photo Source: Getty Images)
Pratyay Tiwari
PRATYAY TIWARI

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England pacer Stuart Broad stands ruled out of the remainder of the five-Test series against India, having torn his right calf muscle. Broad slipped during yesterday’s training with the England team, gearing up for the second Test of the series at Lord’s, and underwent an MRI scan in London on Wednesday (August 11) that revealed the tear.

Saqib Mahmood, who had a stellar run in the limited-overs home series against Pakistan last month (nine wickets at 13.66 in three ODIs, followed by four at 28 in two T20Is) after the host camp was hit by Covid-19, has been called as Broad’s cover.

Touted to play his 150th Test, Broad’s injury comes at a time when England is already panting over the availability of another veteran, James Anderson, who surpassed Anil Kumble’s long-standing 619 Test wickets tally during the Trent Bridge Test last week to become the third-leading wicket-taker in Test history.

For Anderson’s age-old accomplice, Broad, however, the series-opener was not a happening event as he endured wicketless first-innings before managing to dismiss KL Rahul towards the end of Day 4. The final day was a washout, leaving both England and India with shared points at the start of a new World Test Championship cycle.

Depleted England search for stability 

The host camp does not have the services of either Ben Stokes, Jofra Archer or Chris Woakes, all missing due to a combination of injuries and personal reasons: Stokes cited mental health issues as the reason behind pulling out of the current series, Archer’s recurring elbow injury has ruled him out until the Ashes later this year, whereas England could not include Woakes in their 17-man squad meant for the first two Tests as he injured his heel during the home series against Sri Lanka.

Amidst a slew of missing names, the hosts have recalled Moeen Ali in the squad who last played in the whites in the second Chennai Test during the away four-match series against India earlier this year, before leaving as a part of ECB’s rest and rotation policy. England have also relieved their off-spinner Dom Bess after Ali’s inclusion, with Jack Leach as the other designated spinner in the unit.

The visitors camp have an injury concern too, with skipper Virat Kohli confirming on the eve of the Lord’s encounter about the injury-enforced ouster of Shardul Thakur (hamstring).