Cook to carry on with England

Bopara's back problem leaves tourists needing batting cover

Last Updated: 22/02/12 5:23pm

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Alastair Cook will stay on with the England squad for the upcoming Twenty20 series against Pakistan.

England's one-day captain has been added as cover for Essex team-mate Ravi Bopara, who missed the fourth and final 50-over contest due to a back problem.

Cook is in good form, having registered hundreds in the first two ODI games in Abu Dhabi. He also made an 80 in England's successful run chase in Dubai on Saturday, though he failed in the series finale at the same venue.

The left-handed opener has played four times for his country in the shortest format, making 61 runs at an average of 15.25. His last appearance, however, was back in 2009 against South Africa at Centurion.

"I've been asked to stay on," he said. "It's not often you get to hit the ball as well as I have in the last week and a half so it's important to keep playing."

Stuart Broad will lead the tourists in the three-match T20 series, starting with Thursday's opener at the International Cricket Stadium in Dubai.

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