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Ball fighting fit ahead of Ashes opener at the Gabba

20 November 2017 11:01

Jake Ball says he is 100 per cent fit for England's Ashes opener against Australia, having suffered an ankle injury in the build-up to the series.

Seamer Ball suffered a sprained right ankle while bowling his fourth over on day two of England's warm-up match against a Cricket Australia XI in Adelaide.

His injury came shortly after Steven Finn was ruled out of the series with a knee injury, further limiting the options available to Joe Root, with Ben Stokes' participation still shrouded in mystery.

One of Ball or Craig Overton are expected to be selected in Stokes' place at the Gabba, with Jonny Bairstow and Moeen Ali taking on more batting responsibility, and the Nottinghamshire man is confident he can fill the role.

"I'm fully fit now," he said. "Last few days in Townsville I was off my full run, and I've had a few sessions in the field. 

"I'm in a really good position at the minute, feel like I've had enough bowling, so I hope come the first day I'll be ready to go."

Ball took 1-31 in England's first warm-up against a Western Australia XI, but believes he was building up a nice head of steam before injury struck.

He continued: "I'm really confident in what I'm doing. I think it made the injury a little bit more frustrating, the fact I was bowling really well.

"To pick up that niggle was a little setback – but since I've been back, I still feel like it's coming out nicely.

"I've played club cricket in Australia so I've always had in the back of my mind that these pitches can really suit my style of bowling. In Perth, then the first few overs in Adelaide, it reinforced that. I hope I can show what I can do out there [at the Gabba]."

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