England’s top fast bowler is a doubt for the Ashes after tearing his calf muscle while playing for Lancashire this weekend.
<div><p>James Anderson is England’s all time leading wicket taker and he has been their most potent weapon for many years. Fans will therefore pray that he returns to full fitness in time for the best-of-five Test series against Australia, which begins at Edgbaston on August 1. The 36-year-old will undergo a rehabilitation programme and he will not feature for Lancashire during their next two matches.</p><p>England suffered a humiliating 4-0 defeat at the last Ashes series, held Down Under in 2017-18. Yet the home team has won eight of the last nine Ashes and England are the 10/11 (1.91) favourites with <a href="https://a.oddsmarket.com/record/v?c=150&a=b4150791-892f-469b-9b6a-7dfc6df0fb07&f=1" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Ladbrokes">Ladbrokes</a> to reclaim the crown this year, while <a href="https://a.oddsmarket.com/record/v?c=150&a=bf7f64f4-cd67-4904-9b00-6ded1d41fd18&f=1" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="Bet365">Bet365</a> makes Australia 7/4 underdogs. <a href="https://a.oddsmarket.com/record/v?c=150&a=a710bfac-73c1-4a57-b441-2caf1b9f397b&f=1" rel="nofollow" target="_blank" title="William Hill">William Hill</a> reacted to the Anderson news by pushing out the odds on England, and shortening its price on an Australia upset.</p><h2>Jason Roy in Contention for The Ashes</h2><p>England have been the world’s top ranked ODI side for the past 14 months, but the Test side has failed to hit those heights. There is now talk of bringing some white-ball stars into the fold in order to boost their Test fortunes, and Jofra Archer and Jason Roy are being seriously considered for the Ashes. Roy could be given the nod to take Keaton Jennings’ place and open alongside Rory Burns.</p><p>“It is no secret that in Test cricket we are looking for a solid combination at the top of the order since [Alastair] Cook retired last year. Roy’s had success at international cricket and that goes along way to being able to handle the pressure. It’s a definite option we’ve been talking about around the selection table for the last 12 months or so. The way he goes about his batting gives confidence to the rest of the batting line-up.</p></div>