<div class="img-caption-wrap img-caption-wrap-left"> <img alt="Ashes 2013: Graeme Swann says bowling arm feeling great" src="https://st2.cricketcountry.com/wp-content/uploads/cricket/image_20130704203249.jpg" title="Ashes 2013: Graeme Swann says bowling arm feeling great" /> <p class="imgcaptionnew" style="width:290px;"> Graeme Swann was hit on his bowling arm while batting against Essex in a warm-up match, but returned to take five for 68 © Getty Images</p> </div> <strong>London: Jul 4, 2013</strong><br /> <br /> Off-spinner <a href="/tags/Graeme-Swann/post" target="_blank">Graeme Swann</a> eased fears he could miss the start of the Ashes against Australia by <a href="https://www.cricketcountry.com/cricket-articles/Graeme-Swann-spins-England-to-victory-in-warm-up-match-against-Essex/28567" target="_blank">leading England to victory over Essex</a> on Wednesday despite nursing a swollen arm.<br /> <br /> Swann was hit on his bowling arm while batting on Monday on the second day of the four-day match.<br /> <br /> What made matters worse was the fact it was the same arm which needed an operation on his elbow earlier this year.<br /> <br /> But having taken five for 68 against Essex, the 34-year-old was feeling chipper.<br /> <br /> "The arm's great," he told <em>Sky Sports</em>. "Obviously, I was a bit worried at first when I got hit — I'm not used to getting smashed by rockets.<br /> <br /> "But after a day off the field, watching our boys toil hard, I decided that it was time to get out there."<br /> <br /> It was a welcome stint for the Nottinghamshire bowler, who said he needed some match practice.<br /> <br /> "Having not played much in the Champions Trophy, and then missing out on the first innings here after getting whacked on the arm, I was very keen to get at least 20 overs under my belt," he said.<br /> <br /> "Thankfully I managed to do that today [Wednesday], and to pick up a few wickets is always nice. The more you do something, the better you get at it.<br /> <br /> "With the first Test at Trent Bridge next week, it was important I felt good about my game — and I do at the minute."<br /> <br /> England coach <a href="/tags/Andy-Flower/post" target="_blank">Andy Flower</a> said it was a relief to see a crucial part of his attack playing freely after Monday's scare, particularly with the first Ashes Test only a week away.<br /> <br /> "There were great concerns about him. We thought he might have cracked his ulna (one of the two bones in the forearm)," said Flower.<br /> <br /> "Luckily it wasn't the case, but it was badly swollen — not only when he was batting but afterwards.<br /> <br /> "For a couple of hours, we thought he might have been missing [from the start of the Ashes] — which would have been a serious blow — but it would have given someone else a better chance.<br /> <br /> "If something had been cracked, he wouldn't have been able to carry on batting.<br /> <br /> "When he came in I was surprised by how swollen it was.<br /> <br /> "I was also surprised by how well he played the fast bowler — after getting hit that badly, he fought it out there and didn't come off and get it seen to.<br /> <br /> "It's a good example of his resilience. Because he's a jokey sort of guy, we forget he is quite a tough competitor as well."<br /> <br /> Flower also <a href="https://www.cricketcountry.com/cricket-articles/Ashes-2013-Stuart-Broad-declares-himself-fit-for-1st-Test/28590" target="_blank">received a boost regarding Stuart Broad</a>, who had a cortisone injection in his sore right shoulder, an injury that ruled him out of the Essex match.<br /> <br /> "He should be okay," said Flower. "He could not have played this game. But we hope that's it for that problem."