General News | 4th December 2008
Swann In Test Squad For India Return
Notts spinner Graeme Swann has been included in the England squad for the re-arranged two-Test tour of India.
Stuart Broad is also named but a hamstring injury has ruled him out of the first Test. He is expected to arrive in India in time for the second Test in Mohali from Friday 19 December.
England will travel to a holding camp in Abu Dhabi before flying to India on Monday.
England captain Kevin Pietersen says that the squad made a collective decision to travel after listening to security advice.
"It's fantastic the guys want to go and rub shoulders together with India at a time of need," said Pietersen.
"It's a huge stance by this England team to jump on the plane and go and do the business."
England will prepare for the first Test in Chennai with four practice sessions but there is no time for warm up fixtures before the first day of play on Thursday 11 December.
Pietersen added that the security situation was being closely monitored and the team would fly home if there were any safety concerns.
“If there are any alarm bells ringing the collective decision will be to come home,” said Pietersen.
"But we are very focused on playing red-ball cricket. Everybody has become a bit more open-minded about their decision. They've spoken to family members and they have realised that it's pretty huge to go back to India.
"I didn't persuade anybody, I respect everybody's individual concern and respect their decisions - they are men at the end of the day. I think it's very clear that nobody was told what to do."
Ryan Sidebottom’s side strain has ruled him out of the tour while Samit Patel has been included in the England Performance Squad who will help to prepare the Test side for the fixtures.
England squad for the two-Test tour of India: KP Pietersen (capt, Hampshire), TR Ambrose (wkt, Warwickshire), JM Anderson (Lancashire), IR Bell (Warwickshire), SCJ Broad (Nottinghamshire), PD Collingwood (Durham), AN Cook (Essex), A Flintoff (Lancashire), SJ Harmison (Durham), MS Panesar (Northants), MJ Prior (wkt, Sussex), OA Shah (Middlesex), AJ Strauss (Middlesex), GP Swann (Nottinghamshire)
England performance squad: RS Bopara (Essex), MA Davies (Durham), RH Joseph (Kent), A Khan (Kent), SI Mahmood (Lancashire), SR Patel (Nottinghamshire), LE Plunkett (Durham), OP Rayner (Sussex), A Richardson (Middlesex)