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Pigeon's fitness worries Australia

Australia's selectors should be concerned over the fitness of McGrath, Terry Alderman said.

india Updated: Feb 01, 2006 12:11 IST

Australia's selectors should be concerned over the fitness of leading paceman Glenn McGrath, especially as a replacement has yet to be found, former Test seamer Terry Alderman told the

Sydney Telegraph

on Wednesday.

Alderman believes McGrath, 36 next week, will struggle to play all five matches in the next Ashes series against England starting in November.

"If I was a selector I'd be pretty scared," said Alderman, who played 41 Tests for Australia.

"There's no ready-made replacement.

"He is a day-by-day, game-by-game prospect. Everyone has to realise that. It's a compact Ashes series next summer."

Alderman thinks the series against England, which will be squeezed into a six-week window, may be too intensive for McGrath.

"If he does play in the first Test, he won't play in all five," Alderman said.

"I am not convinced that this time next year he will be in the Australian team. If he starts next (southern hemisphere) summer, he may not be there at the end."

Alderman joined a growing list of former players to question McGrath's fitness, including former captain Steve Waugh and fast bowler Jeff Thomson.

McGrath has struggled in the current one-day tri-series, taking only four wickets in five matches against Sri Lanka and South Africa.

He has taken 542 Test wickets, putting him third on the all-time list, and 331 in one-day internationals.

First Published: Feb 01, 2006 12:11 IST