Eng vs Aus, 1st Test, Edgbaston – England are confident their tired bowlers will be ready for the Lord’s

England are hoping a week-long gap between the first and second Ashes Tests will allow their bowling attack time to recover ahead of back-to-back matches at Lord’s and Headingley, after a heavy workload at Edgbaston this week .

The men’s second Test begins on June 28 at Lord’s and England are set to train just twice before then, giving their bowlers time to recharge after spending 208.4 overs in the field in their defeat at two wickets against Australia in Birmingham.

“Seven days is actually long enough to give everyone a good rest,” said England captain Ben Stokes. “We’ll meet again in three or four days, I think, and we’ll assess how everyone is doing and we’ll have to make a decision from there.”

Of particular concern is Moeen Ali’s spinning finger, which he opened on the second day of the first Test on his return to red-ball cricket after a 21-month absence. Moeen was clearly struggling to get a hold of the ball and only managed seven overs on the final day – precisely when Stokes would have hoped to rely heavily on his main spinner.

“I told Mo to tell me if her finger was sore, and I felt it was even before that,” Stokes said. “For him to come back in his first test game and operate like he did and really put himself through the pain barrier for the team. [was great].

“You could see what it meant to him to play for England again with a huge smile on his face. I picked him for his winning moments. He had a few with the ball and we almost crossed the line… [The break] give Mo a good chance for his finger to heal.”

England have yet to decide whether they will call another spinner as cover for Moeen, with Rehan Ahmed, Liam Dawson and Will Jacks among the favorites if they decide to do so. They may also consider fielding a four-man seam attack at Lord’s, especially after Joe Root’s orderly return with his offsets in the first Test.

Stokes tagged Stuart Broad and Ollie Robinson for making “incredible” changes on the final night but James Anderson, for so long the leader of England’s attack, had an offside. He returned match figures of 1 for 109 and was overlooked when England took the second new ball in the closing stages of the Test.

Speaking ahead of the start of play on Tuesday, Anderson admitted to Sky Sports he was ‘still looking for some rhythm’ on his return from a groin problem which kept him out for more than a month. months, including England’s 10-wicket win over Ireland.

“It’s been tough,” Anderson added. “I feel like I need some playing time to get back into it and it’s been five to six weeks since I last played. I feel like to have played well, but I really feel like there’s more to it.”

Mark Wood, neglected for the first test, will enter the running at Lord’s.

Stokes himself played seven overs in each innings and took two vital wickets, trapping Steven Smith lbw in the first inning and inducing a cut from Usman Khawaja in the second with a leg-cut. He barely celebrated Khawaja’s dismissal – “I was absolutely flying on caffeine,” he explained – but said he saw his bowling workload as “a huge boost”.

“I’ve been straining my body more than it has in the last year, which are obviously good signs for me and another confidence boost for me,” Stokes said. “Going through this, knowing that we still have four games to come has given me a huge boost.

“I can’t remember the last time I was able to continue bowling. I was just very happy that I was able to have a good long time, and I love being in that situation. I like to play bowling long spells, especially when the game is on the line.”

He explained that he tried to “keep up” after dismissing Khawaja, explaining that the match “wasn’t over”. Stokes said: “If you looked back two or three years ago it would have been a big party and all that kind of stuff.

“I kind of felt it was my time in the game to set myself up. It was obviously a big wicket to get but the game wasn’t over and I just had to try really hard to stay level – because I was flying high on caffeine.”

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