England off-spinner Graeme Swann, pictured in July 2011, has declared himself fit for the third Test against India at Edgbaston next week.
AFP/File - Paul Ellis


LONDON (AFP) - England off-spinner Graeme Swann has declared himself fit for the third Test against India at Edgbaston next week.

Swann was struck on the left hand while batting in the second Test at his Nottinghamshire home ground of Trent Bridge last week, a match England won by the huge margin of 319 runs to go 2-0 up in the four-match series.

He was subsequently unable to field in his usual second slip position because of the injury.

There were concerns the right-arm bowler had suffered a broken bone but Swann, speaking to Sky Sports, said Thursday: "I've had another X-ray on the hand just to check and it's not serious.

"There's a little bother in there but nothing to affect my preparations.

"It might affect my batting in the nets beforehand but that will just stop me facing a few bouncers from our boys."

Jonathan Trott is England's only other fitness doubt after sustaining a shoulder injury while fielding at Trent Bridge.

Victory at Edgbaston would see England replace India at the top of the ICC's Test Championship table.

India's tour has been marred by injury problems, with all-rounder Yuvraj Singh (broken finger) and off-spinner Harbhajan Singh (stomach muscle) both ruled out of the remaining two Tests.

India are also waiting on the fitness of left-arm quick Zaheer Khan, who broke down with a hamstring problem midway through his 14th over in the first Test at Lord's, which England won by 196 runs, and didn't play at Trent Bridge.

Opening batsman Gautam Gambhir was another Trent Bridge absentee after suffering an elbow injury at Lord's.

Dynamic opener Virender Sehwag, not with the squad for the first two Tests while he recovered from shoulder surgery, is set to join up with the tour party in time for the two-day practice match against Northamptonshire starting Friday.

Meanwhile middle-order batsman Virat Kohli and left-arm spinner Pragyan Ojha have replaced Yuvraj and Harbhajan in India's squad.

England are due to name their squad on Saturday and could well name the same 12 for the third match in a row, with fast bowler Chris Tremlett, who has struggled with back and hamstring problems lately, set to rejoin the XI that won the second Test with more than a day to spare.



Source: dreamcricket.com

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