Lee not upto Test standard, says Lawson

June 14th, 2009 - 1:10 pm ICT by ANI  

Melbourne, June 14 (ANI): In a brutal assessment of fast bowler Brett Lee’s form,ex-Australian cricketer and former coach of the Pakistan cricket team, Geoff Lawson has said that the 32-year-old quick wasn’t up to Test standard and would have been dumped from the Australian team if injury hadn’t forced him out of the game at the end of last year.

The Daily Telegraph quoted Lawson as saying that he was stunned that Lee had even made the 16-man touring party.

“Leaving Dougy Bollinger out of the squad, you’ve left out an outstanding left-arm fast bowler, who’s in form, for a right-hand guy coming back from injury and you don’t know how he’s bowling,’ Lawson said.Lawson rated the 310-wicket veteran as Australia’s last-choice bowler for the Ashes tour.

“It doesn’t add up and it might come back to bite them. (Lee) would have been dropped if he hadn’t been injured. He hasn’t been in form for 18 months, going on two years, so it’s an interesting selection to put him in when he’s got no form and no match practice,’ Lawson said.

Lee has only played Twenty20 cricket since his return a month ago, having broken down with foot and ankle injuries in the Boxing Day Test against South Africa.

He has bowled 40 overs - 268 balls - this year and his longest spell was just 25 deliveries (including an extra) in his return game for Australia against Pakistan on May 7.

At his quickest and best, Lee has been Australia’s intimidating spearhead. But he was punished in Australia’s failed Twenty20 World Cup campaign this month, taking 3-95 in his eight overs.

“You can’t play Twenty20 cricket and expect that it’s a testing ground for Test cricket, it’s not going to happen,’ Lawson said.

Lee is the only Australian bowler in the squad with Test experience on English soil.

But those figures don’t enhance his case for selection either. In 18 Test matches against England, Lee averages 40.6 per wicket and has a strike-rate of 63.3, well down on his career numbers of 30.8 and 53.3. (ANI)

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