Lee, Symonds cleared for IPL, heartbreak for Watson
Controversial all-rounder Andrew Symonds, fit-again pacer Bret Lee and David Hussey have been cleared by CA to play in the closing stages of IPL while Shane Watson, Nathan Bracken and James Hopes have been told to stand down from the lucrative T20 event after they failed medical tests.cricket Updated: May 08, 2009 16:06 IST
Controversial all-rounder Andrew Symonds, fit-again pacer Bret Lee and David Hussey have been cleared by Cricket Australia to play in the closing stages of Indian Premier League while Shane Watson, Nathan Bracken and James Hopes have been told to stand down from the lucrative Twenty20 event after they failed medical tests.
Symonds (Deccan Chargers), Lee (Kings XI Punjab), who returned to Australian line-up after four months in the one-off Twenty20 International against Pakistan in ubai, and Hussey (Kolkata Knight Riders) were cleared to fly to South Africa immediately after the match.
Symonds and Lee, who has been recovering from an ankle injury suffered in January, are likely to face off at Kimberley on Saturday while Hussey will be available for Knight Riders' match against Delhi Daredevils in Johannesburg.
But in a big blow to defending champions Rajasthan Royals, all-rounder Shane Watson injured himself while batting in the Twenty20 International which ruled him out of the IPL.
Watson, IPL 2008 player of the tournament, was initially cleared after passing the medical test but unfortunate to suffer a mild groin strain during the Twenty20 international.
"Shane has suffered a mild groin strain while batting. He will return home for scans and rehabilitation. His condition will be reviewed in coming weeks to determine his availability for the ICC World Twenty20 in the United Kingdom," team doctor Trefor James said in a CA statement.
Injury-prone Watson had just returned to the Australian line-up in the series against Pakistan after being out since last November with back-stress fractures.
Meanwhile, Nathan Bracken (Bangalore Royal Challengers) and James Hopes (Kings XI Punjab) failed to pass medical tests conducted here by CA medical staff and they have been told to take rest in view of next month's Twenty20 World Cup in England.
"Hopes and Bracken have existing knee problems and it has been decided that a period of rest and rehabilitation over the next two to three weeks will be the best preparation for both players ahead of the World Twenty20," team doctor James said.
"With the amount of cricket the one-day international players have played since early January this year and given the Australian team's schedule for the next 12 months, it is important we continue to manage player workloads and injury concerns," added James.