Strauss - Patience is key
Andrew Strauss has backed Stuart Broad to rediscover his finest form should he retain his place in the England XI at Lord's.
By Joe Drabble
Last Updated: 16/07/11 5:01pm
England captain Andrew Strauss has backed Stuart Broad to rediscover his finest form should he retain his place in the England XI for the first npower Test match against India at Lord's.
England's 12-man squad for the most anticipated Test of the summer will be announced on Sunday with question marks lingering over Broad's current worth in the Test team.
The 25-year-old seamer struggled during the recent Test series against Sri Lanka, taking just eight wickets at an average of 48.75, prompting calls for Yorkshireman Tim Bresnan to replace him in the side.
Broad responded with a morale-boosting five-wicket haul for county Nottinghamshire against Somerset last week and Strauss believes it is only a matter of time before the fiery right-armer comes good again.
Strong and fit
"He is clearly frustrated at not taking more wickets recently," said Strauss.
"If you are not performing up to the standards you are used to, it hurts. But I don't think he is doing a lot wrong."
"The key is to be patient and persevere and not try and change his method too much, stick with what he knows, keep banging it on a length consistently," Strauss added.
"When our bowlers have done that over the last couple of years, it has generally worked."
As for Bresnan, Strauss agrees the Yorkshire seamer impressed following his return to fitness for the NatWest one-day series victory over Sri Lanka.
"He hasn't done himself any harm with his performance in the one-dayers," he said, of a cricketer who appeared to come of age to help clinch the Ashes in Australia last winter.
"He has had a frustrating period with injuries but is looking strong and fit and bowling well.
"A lot of people might have been surprised by how well he did in Australia. I don't think we were, because he does the fundamentals very well."
Thursday's series-opener at Lord's will be the 2,000th Test of all time, and 100th between England and India.
And the landmarks don't stop there because another century for India run-machine Sachin Tendulkar will see him become the first batsman to make 100 international hundreds.
To achieve the feat at the home of cricket would present yet another fairytale moment in the career of the 'Little Master', however Strauss insists he is not fazed by the challenge of stopping the India talisman.
"Clearly he deserves a lot of praise for what he has achieved in the game," the England skipper added.
"But out there in the middle we will be even more determined to get him out cheaply, because of what he has achieved.
"I know our bowlers will look upon it as a fantastic challenge for them - and it is a challenge they are definitely up for."