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Hoggard gives England fresh injury scare

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July 9, 2006

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CANTERBURY, England: Matthew Hoggard gave England a fresh injury scare just days before the first Test against Pakistan after sustaining a freak hand injury here on Saturday.

During the warm-up before play on the third day of the first-class match between England A and Pakistan, Hoggard had his hand trodden on by Tim Bresnan as he tried to pick up a cricket ball which his fellow Yorkshire pace bowler was trying to kick.

Hoggard, 29, had to have stitches inserted in his right, bowling hand and England selector Geoff Miller later told reporters that he would not be able to bowl during Saturday’s third day and possibly not on Sunday either.

The swing specialist had not played in a first-class match since Yorkshire’s County Championship defeat away to Sussex at Arundel which finished on June 23, hence the desire of England chiefs to have him take part in the A game.

England are due to name their first Test squad on Sunday and the opening match of a four-Test series against Pakistan starts at Lord’s on Thursday. England know they will be without at least one senior pace bowler at Lord’s in Andrew Flintoff, missing because of an ankle injury, although they hope to have him back in time for the second Test at the all-rounder’s Lancashire home ground later this month.

Flintoff is due to play in a Twenty20 match against Nottinghamshire on Sunday and Miller said the hero of last year’s Ashes series would have to come through Lancashire’s County Championship match away to Kent at Canterbury starting on July 18 before being considered for the second Test at Old Trafford, due to get underway on July 27.

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