First Test: Graeme Swann and Tim Bresnan both back in England's squad to face New Zealand
Last Updated: 11/05/13 12:19pm
Graeme Swann and Tim Bresnan brought back for England
Graeme Swann and Tim Bresnan are both back in England's squad for the first Test against New Zealand after their recoveries from elbow surgery.
Nottinghamshire off-spinner Swann and Yorkshire seamer Bresnan, who both last played Test cricket in the series-clinching December Test against India in Nagpur, were included in a 12-man squad for the opener at Lord's on Thursday.
Bresnan underwent surgery on his bowling arm, after England announced he would be rested from the three-Test tour of New Zealand, and it was decided on the eve of the first of those matches in March that Swann would also need an operation in the United States.
"We are anticipating another very competitive series against New Zealand and know that we will need to improve significantly on our performances in the recent Test series against them if we are to start the international summer on a positive note."
Both bowlers have been back in action for their counties this season, and their return to the England reckoning this week is as expected.
Alastair Cook's squad include the same six specialist batsmen who featured in England's last Test - the drawn match in Auckland two months ago - in the continued absence of the injured Kevin Pietersen.
Yorkshire tyros Johnny Bairstow and Joe Root both keep their places while Swann replaces his fellow spinner Monty Panesar with England resisting naming an extra seamer - as they did before the first Test against West Indies 12 months ago, when Graham Onions was included.
National selector Geoff Miller said: "Both Graeme Swann and Tim Bresnan have worked hard to regain fitness following elbow surgery and have demonstrated through their performances for their counties that they are ready for the challenge of international cricket."
Bairstow or Root are likely to be omitted from the Test team when this summer's Ashes series starts if Pietersen recovers from his knee problem.
After the disappointing 0-0 stalemate in New Zealand, the hosts have a score to settle against the Kiwis in the two-match series at Lord's and Headingley.
Miller added: "We are anticipating another very competitive series against New Zealand and know that we will need to improve significantly on our performances in the recent Test series against them if we are to start the international summer on a positive note.
"This series provides a good opportunity for the players to show that they have learnt from the experiences over the winter."
England squad (for the first Investec Test v New Zealand at Lord's, starting on May 16): AN Cook (Essex, Captain), JM Anderson (Lancashire), JM Bairstow (Yorkshire), IR Bell (Warwickshire), TT Bresnan (Yorkshire), SCJ Broad (Nottinghamshire), NRD Compton (Somerset), ST Finn (Middlesex), MJ Prior (Sussex), JE Root (Yorkshire), GP Swann (Nottinghamshire), IJL Trott (Warwickshire).