England's bowling problems continue with Tremlett and Swann doubtful for final warm-up
Chris Tremlett and Graeme Swann's fitness remain in doubt for England's final warm-up match against a Pakistan Cricket Board XI on Wednesday.
As Tim Bresnan flew home from the United Arab Emirates on Tuesday morning because of post-operative pain in his bowling elbow, Tremlett's eye infection and Swann's sore thigh were still keeping England's medical staff busy.
Tremlett had to miss the opening victory, at the start of this Test and limited-overs tour against Pakistan, and Swann was unable to bowl or field on the final day.
Injury problems: Bresnan (right) has flown home and Tremlett (left) has an eye infection
A scan on Swann's injury niggle has yet to take place, and Tremlett's eye has so far failed to respond to treatment.
England have other issues to settle in terms of appropriate preparation for all, in the three-day match against the PCB at the GCA ground, before the first of three Tests on January 17.
The uncertainty, particularly over Tremlett, opens up the possibility of a heartening return to England colours for Graham Onions.
Sore thigh: Swann is also a doubt
The Durham seamer has not played for his
country since the new year Test in Cape Town in 2010 – in which he
helped to salvage a dramatic last-ditch draw by blocking out the final
over, for the second time in that series.
Onions subsequently suffered a career-threatening back injury, and a long road back after surgery, but was named as cover for England here and – following Bresnan's injury – finds himself possibly on the verge of a comeback.
The 29-year-old had inevitable mixed feelings at the opportunity which has come his way because of a fellow pace bowler's misfortune.
Back from the wilderness: Onions has been called into the squad
'I feel really bad for Tim,' he said.
'He has been an integral part of England's side for the last year or two.
'Whether or not he was expecting it, I don't know. But he hadn't done any bowling, and that's probably the reason why I was out here because there were certain injury doubts over him.
'It's up to me now to try to come into the squad and try and make a difference.'