James Anderson gives Peter Moores selection headache

James Anderson's return to action for Lancashire has caused a selection headache for head coach Peter Moores.

England pace bowler Anderson has been given permission to feature in the next two Championship fixtures by the England and Wales Cricket Board.

"We're really excited about that," said Moores. "He's been training with us and it's great to have him around.

"It will be exciting to put him back in that team. Who we put him in for is another question, but he'll play."

England team-mates Matt Prior, Stuart Broad and Joe Root will also be playing Championship cricket this week in preparation for the home series against New Zealand, which begins on Lord's on 16 May.

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James Anderson

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Anderson, who agreed a new two-year contract with Lancashire in September, only appeared in one four-day match for the Red Rose club last summer, taking five wickets in a home defeat by Nottinghamshire.

The 2011 champions, who are aiming to bounce back to the top flight at the first attempt, began their Division Two campaign with a creditable draw against Worcestershire.

Moores was pleased with his side's display and is confident that he has the players at his disposal to challenge for promotion.

Speaking to BBC Radio Lancashire, he added: "It's the toughest side I've ever picked. I don't think I've ever left Tom Smith out when he's been fully fit, and also Stephen Moore didn't play and he's been playing well.

"Testament to the lads that were picked - they've been playing very well, and we also know that we've left two or three players out who are playing very well.

"We're seeing some other names within the squad start to push, which is making us look like a very competitive squad and that's what we want. The key is that we all stay focused on the goals we've got and, over time, normally everyone gets the opportunity to show what they've got."