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England to play it safe with Swann

England will take no chances with the fitness of Graeme Swann in their ICC Champions Trophy semi-final, such is their confidence in James Tredwell. Having missed his side's opening victory against Australia due to a back problem, Swann sat out yesterday's 10-run triumph over New Zealand at Cardiff Wales Stadium with a tight calf. Yet while England would naturally prefer their senior off-spinner to be fit for a last-four clash against either South Africa or India later this week, the presence of Tredwell, pictured, who averages 26 with the ball in one-day internationals, ensures there is no hint of panic when it comes to Swann's potential absence. "James has done a fantastic job and we are lucky in that department to have two outstanding bowlers," reasoned Alastair Cook. “We are going to play it safe with Swanny; he obviously has a tight calf and it just depends how he pulls up over the next couple of days. "He will not be risked (if he is not 100% fit) as we are fortunate enough to have Tredders and he is more than just a back-up."

England successfully defended 169 against the Black Caps in a game reduced to 24-overs-a-side by inclement weather. Cook's 47-ball 64 was the most significant contribution to England's innings, which ended in disappointing fashion as the final seven wickets added just 28. "What I found hard was knowing what a good score was," added the captain. "Maybe we set ourselves a little bit too high at the end. We were looking at 180-190 but had we set our sights lower we might have got even more." England appeared to be in control for much of New Zealand's chase, yet a partnership of 73 inside eight overs from Kane Williamson and debutant Corey Anderson kept the Black Caps in the hunt. When Williamson eventually departed to Stuart Broad for 67 - with 35 needed from 17 balls - several replays were required to confirm the bowler had not overstepped. To England's relief, Broad was eventually cleared by the narrowest of margins. "On the big screen it looked like part of his foot landed just behind the line and pushed forward, but of course New Zealand might have seen it differently," acknowledged Cook. "If it had been called a no-ball, we could not have had any complaints." To his credit, Cook's opposite number Brendon McCullum declined the opportunity to complain about the tight no-ball call that went against his team, who must now wait to see whether they have done enough to qualify alongside England. "It was close, but I didn't have a problem with it," said McCullum. "Sometimes you get the rub of the green and sometimes you don't. If it had have been overturned I don't think they would have been too upset and as it stood we're not too upset."

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