Finn return to fitness heightens pressure on under-fire Broad

ENGLAND fast bowler Steven Finn has recovered from a thigh strain to travel with the squad to Kolkata for next week’s third Test against India, after coming through a warm-up game unscathed.

Finn took 4-50 on Tuesday and bowled seven overs yesterday to prove his fitness during an England Performance Programme innings and 193-run victory over a DY Patil Academy XI.

Surrey seam bowler Sean Meaker, who was called up to the Test squad as cover for the Middlesex bowler at the start of the Indian tour, will stay with the EPP squad despite a decent spell with the ball.

Meaker took 3-8 yesterday but accepts Finn, who has 66 wickets in 16 England Tests, will be ahead of him for a place in the third Test, which starts on Wednesday.

“Finny has that X-factor, and it would be great to see him back,” said Meaker. “I wouldn’t be surprised if we saw him [in the third Test]. He bowled brilliantly, hit the mark straight away and got four wickets.”

Finn’s return increases the pressure on Stuart Broad, who has failed to take a wicket in the opening two Tests, but has more Test wickets than any other pace bowler in the world this year.