Clarke, Johnson to miss Sunday’s T20 against New Zealand

February 13th, 2009 - 6:52 pm ICT by IANS  

Melbourne, Feb 13 (IANS) Australia vice-captain Michael Clarke was ruled out of Sunday’s Twenty20 international against New Zealand with a back injury and has been replaced by Victorian Rob Quiney.
Fast bowler Mitchell Johnson has also been ruled out of the game at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG) in order to manage a niggling ankle injury ahead of the tour of South Africa. Johnson will not be replaced in the squad of twelve.

Clarke was supposed to lead the side in the absence of Ricky Ponting but now Brad Haddin will be the captain and all-rounder Cameron White will be his deputy, Cricket Australia (CA) said in a statement.

The back injury forced Clarke to miss the crucial decider against New Zealand in the one-day series in Brisbane, Friday.

“It’s unfortunate that Michael Clarke has been forced to miss the game due to injury. Given the side leaves for South Africa the morning after the game in Sydney, there was really no alternative but to take a conservative approach to management of this minor injury,” selection panel chairman Andrew Hilditch said.

“It does present a great opportunity for Rob Quiney to join the Australian squad. Rob has performed well in Twenty20 cricket this year, with probably the highlight being his excellent innings in the KFC Big Bash final.”

Australia team physiotherapist Alex Kountouris said that Clarke has been experiencing back pain since the One-day game in Adelaide. He also said the batsman has shown some improvement over the last three-four days.

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