England bowler Jake Ball explains why he left the Gabba field amid ankle injury fears

Ashes 2017: England bowler reveals why he left the field amid injury fears
Jake Ball took his first Ashes wicket at the Gabba, dismissing Australia opener David Warner (Picture: Getty)

England bowler Jake Ball has explained why he left the field during Australia’s first innings at the Gabba.

The Nottinghamshire pace bowler appeared in discomfort during his final spell of the day and went off for treatment.

Ball suffered an ankle sprain during England’s second warm-up game in Adelaide but confirmed his brief departure in Brisbane was not a recurrence of the injury.

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Speaking to BT Sport at the close of play, Ball said: ‘It was nothing serious – I just had a toe nail digging in so I just nipped off to give it a clip and then got back out there.’

Ball bowled eight overs on day two of the first Ashes Test and claimed the prize wicket of David Warner, albeit slightly fortuitously as the opener clipped a short ball straight to mid-wicket.

‘It’s not the way I dreamed of it happening but you take every wicket as it comes,’ Ball added. ‘We know it we get two quick wickets you’ve got [Mitchell] Starc and [Pat] Cummins coming in.

‘I think we did well today, we executed our plans and I think we’re due some luck tomorrow.’

With Australia reaching 165-4 at the close of play in reply to England’s 302, James Anderson insists the match is evenly poised going into the third day.

‘It’s difficult to say,’ the bowler said when asked which team is in the ascendancy. ‘I think it’s about even at the moment.

‘We need some quick wickets, we wanted more runs but it didn’t quite go our way in the morning. I thought we bowled pretty well and stuck at the task well.’

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Starc, meanwhile, who claimed figures of 3-77, heaped praise on his captain, Steve Smith, and batsman Shaun Marsh for their vital 89-run stand.

‘They’ve done fantastic for us,’ the left-arm paceman said. ‘It wasn’t an ideal start with the bat but they dug in, faced a lot of balls and we’ve got something to build on now tomorrow.’

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