Johannesburg: England batsman Jonathan Trott is facing a fitness test to see if he will be available to face the `must-win` ICC Champions Trophy match against New Zealand in Cardiff due to a quad injury.
The match has been labelled as a `quarter-final` by England captain Alastair Cook and it is one the hosts will likely need to win if they are to reach the last four.
Although Trott is often criticised for slow-scoring, the South Africa-born batsman has nevertheless been a reliable source of runs in the 50-over format, scoring over 2500 runs at an impressive average of 52.56.
However, the right-hander was off the field for much of the Sri Lankan star`s innings and he now faces a fitness test to see if he will be available to face New Zealand, with England assistant coach Richard Halsall saying that they had thought it best to get Trott, who had a tight right quad, off the field during the games against Sri Lanka before things got significantly worse
Halsall further said that they are yet unsure as to whether Trott will be fit for the crucial game against the Black Caps, adding that he will be examined again on Saturday at training.
England view the Warwickshire player, who bats at number three, as their one-day anchor man, providing a launch-pad for more dynamic batsmen later in the innings, adding that Trott played the role well while top-scoring for England with 76 at The Oval on Thursday in the game against Sri Lanka.
Insisting that Trott`s critics were ill-informed, Halsall said that Trott is among the top ten one-day batsmen in the world and that he builds a magnificent platform for England, adding that he has continued to put the team in a position to score big scores.
However, Halsall admitted that England did not bowl in the disciplined manner that they did against Australia as they took only three wickets against Sri Lanka , adding that they could not hammer out the consistent lengths, which they did against Australia.
Stating that England was expecting to win the game at halfway, Halsall further said that it is necessary for bowlers to be strong and in-form against world-class batsmen, which, he added, English bowlers failed to do so.
As well as Trott, England could also be without seamer and hard-hitting lower-order batsman Tim Bresnan against New Zealand with his wife expecting to give birth to the couple`s first child any time soon.