England confirm James Anderson’s groin injury a month after the start of the Ashes

James Anderson is in doubt for England’s first Test of the summer, starting against Ireland on June 1, after confirmation he had suffered a “slight right groin strain” while playing for Lancashire.

Anderson took no further part in the County Championship match against Somerset at Old Trafford after returning figures of 14-7-16-2 on the first day. His absence received no official injury update until the ECB broke the news late on Sunday evening, less than three weeks before the match at Lord’s.

England are expected to announce their squad for next week’s match against Ireland, with Anderson, who went for a scan on Saturday, “will be assessed in a shorter period of time” according to an ECB statement.

With the Ashes starting in just over a month and Lancashire not playing first-class cricket between now and June 11, Anderson could struggle to prove his fitness ahead of the first Test of the series at Edgbaston.

The injury will bring back memories of Australia’s visit in 2019, when Anderson played the opener but bowled just four overs before suffering a calf strain. The 40-year-old, who is the third-highest wicket-taker in Test history, has played four of five games for Lancashire so far this season, claiming 16 wickets at 8.30pm.

England are likely to be without Jofra Archer before the start of the Ashes, after the fast bowler returned early from the IPL to continue his rehabilitation with a long-term elbow problem, while Olly Stone is expected to be out for several weeks with a hamstring strain sustained while playing for Nottinghamshire.