Fragile Wood on track to replace Anderson in fourth Ashes Test

Frank Dalleres
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ENGLAND expect paceman Mark Wood to replace the injured James Anderson in the fourth Investec Ashes Test against Australia this week despite lingering fitness concerns of his own.

Wood took part in two bowling sessions yesterday at Trent Bridge as he nurses an ankle problem that kept him out of the eight-wicket victory in the third Test at Edgbaston that put England 2-1 up in the series. Should the Durham 25-year-old suffer a setback in the next 48 hours, Yorkshire’s Liam Plunkett and Mark Footit of Derbyshire are on standby for Thursday.

Anderson took 6-47 in the first innings at Edgbaston before suffering a side strain that ruled him out of the fourth Test, although he hopes to be fit for the Oval finale.

Middlesex, meanwhile, have agreed to rest England one-day captain Eoin Morgan for domestic fixtures in order to keep him fresh for limited-overs action against Australia next month.

Morgan is set to sit out the next three One-Day Cup matches and a County Championship clash with Sussex ahead of England’s solitary Twenty20 encounter with Australia on 31 August and five 50-over games that follow. “Eoin has been on the go since October 2014 and is in need of a rest,” said Middlesex director of cricket Angus Fraser.