Steven Finn ready to step up and take a lead role in England's bowling attack

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Steven Finn has big boots to fill in the fourth Investec Test and is confident he can rise to the challenge.

Finn - back with a match-winning performance at Edgbaston last week after a torrid two-year hiatus in his Test career - knows there is added responsibility for all of England's bowlers in the injury-enforced absence of James Anderson.

After his eight wickets in Birmingham to help England go 2-1 up with two to play, Finn is decidedly a resurgent force at the age of 26.


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He, Stuart Broad and - fitness permitting - Mark Wood are set to form the frontline attack at Trent Bridge.

Finn, who replaced Wood to such significant effect last time when the Durham seamer had an ankle niggle, is just two short of 100 Test wickets after his successful comeback.

Noting the significance of Anderson's unavailability, at a ground where England's all-time leading wicket-taker has bagged 53 at under 20 each, Finn knows he must up his game again.

"I've nicked his place in the dressing room, so there's a bit of pressure on me to take the wickets he's taken," he said.

"There's more responsibility.

"We're all as a bowling unit going to have to step up - because he will be sorely missed.

"That's everyone's responsibility in the attack, not (just) mine."

Finn has a wonderful opportunity to be centre stage in an Ashes series victory, but longer-term ambitions too.

It is not so long ago - when he was deemed 'unselectable' by coaching staff in early 2014, for example, or in tears at Edgbaston after a wicketless day for Middlesex against Warwickshire - that his international return might have seemed implausible.

It is more than a dream these days, though, to be assured of his place in England's best team.

"I would love to do that one day - that's a massive ambition of mine," he said.

"I've always wanted to be a dead cert in an England team. My driving ambition has been to get to that place."

"At the moment I'm very much a support player, I suppose ... (I want to) keep building (on my performances) so it comes to a stage where you are a name on a team sheet rather than a bloke with a question mark against you."

Australia are also mindful of Anderson's absence.

Mitchell Johnson reached 300 Test wickets in Birmingham, just ahead of Broad - who needs one more on his home ground to join him.

Johnson spoke for the tourists, who appear understandably a little relieved that they will not have to deal with Anderson at his favourite venue.

"It's a massive loss for them," he said.

"They'll have to bring somebody else that has to match him, so it's going to be pretty difficult to do.

"They will miss him ... whoever they bring in will have big pressure on them."

Steven Finn is an Investec Test cricket ambassador. For more on Investec private banking, visit

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James Anderson (cricket)
England cricket
The Ashes
Steven Finn

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