Jimmy Anderson hopeful of Ashes injury return as England hero set for Derbyshire cameo

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But he is likely to have to get through a match against the Australians to do it.

Anderson pulled up with a calf injury after bowling four overs of the first Test at Edgbaston, suffering a recurrence of an injury which he first suffered playing for Lancashire in early July.

And while he is understood to be making good progress on the way back, running without discomfort, he knows he will have to prove his fitness in a game situation before England will pick him for the Ashes.

Lancashire are set to play Glamorgan in a second division County Championship match at Colwyn Bay starting on Sunday.

But that comes too soon in his rehabilitation and with no second XI fixtures between now and the fourth Test Anderson’s only option is playing for Derbyshire against the Australians in a three-day tour match starting on August 29.

Exposing Anderson to the tourists may not be ideal but England will not make the same mistake again of picking their leading wicket taker and keeping fingers crossed nothing goes wrong given his injury was a key factor in losing the first Test.

“I missed the Ireland Test as a precaution to make sure I was 100 per cent for the Ashes,” said the 37-year-old when discussing his injury recently.

“I felt angry having done all the work to get there.

“All the tests they do on the calf to see if it’s OK, it just wasn’t playing ball so it was hugely frustrating.

“It settled down a bit when we were batting and I was planning on bowling in the second innings, but when I was batting I pushed off for a run and it didn’t feel right.

“There’s nothing else we could have done. I did all the rehab – the only thing I didn’t do was play a match but there’s Twenty20 going on at the minute and there’s no games to play.

“I’m sure if I do manage to come back in this series then I’ll have to play some sort of cricket beforehand.

“You feel lots of guilt [and you are] generally frustrated but you’re trying to help out the lads as much as possible without making them feel worse.”

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