Tremlett shrugs off injury fears
Chris Tremlett overcame the discomfort of an eye infection to help England to their second successive warm-up win - and keep himself in contention for a place in Tuesday’s first Test line-up against Pakistan.
Tremlett went into the three-day match against a Pakistan Cricket Board XI having last played for his country almost six months ago when he was struck down by a back injury.
But the 6ft 7in seamer proved his well-being with a match haul of 4-62 in a 100-run victory, which also owed much to Alastair Cook and Jonathan Trott’s runs and Monty Panesar’s eight wickets.
Tremlett did so too despite the distraction of a sore right eye which did not hamper his bowling but remains a handicap in the field and if he needs to bat.
There is still marginal blurred vision as well as pain in the eye which first began to trouble Tremlett when he arrived in the United Arab Emirates at the very start of this tour 11 days ago.
“It was pretty severe when I got here,” he said. “It has improved, and I see the eye specialist pretty much every day.
“It hasn’t affected my bowling too much. It’s been more my batting and fielding side of things.”
Tremlett has worn sunglasses for the vast majority of the time on the field, and for much of the time off it as England have continued their preparation for the three-Test series.
“It has been a bit of a struggle. But there is a bit of light at the end of the tunnel,” he said. “I hope it will be fine in a couple of days’ time.”
Tremlett was heartened both by his performance and his fitness as England restricted the PCB XI to a first-innings 200 and then bowled them out for 150 second time round.
“It’s nice to be back. It’s been a while for me, after I injured my back at the end of July,” he added. “It’s been a great confidence boost for me to get out there and play again.
“I had a bit of a torrid time with my back for a couple of months, so it helps your confidence to just get through a game and bowl 20-odd overs in a couple of days.”
Despite performing admirably on his return to the side, Tremlett is fully aware of the competition for places in England’s bowling department.
The Ashes winner said: “It’s just about going out there and doing your stuff, and getting wickets is a bonus really.
“I’m happy with the way it went. The competition (for places) is tight, and you have to be on the ball all the time.
“I guess I’m not expecting to play (in the first Test), but just waiting to see what happens. All I can do is put my name in the hat. I’m back fit and hope I will get selected.”