Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Australia’s cricketer Brett Lee is out of the first Ashes test match – which starts on July 8 in Cardiff – with a torn muscle in his left side. He is also doubtful to play the second Test at Lord’s, which begins on July 16. It will be at least two weeks before he can start training in the nets again.

“I am very very disappointed and gutted that I will not be there for the first Test match but I will find a way to bounce back,” said Lee. “I still see myself hopefully playing a major role for Australia through the end part of the series, whether that’s the second, third, fourth or fifth Test match depending on how things go.”

The fast bowler complained about soreness in his left side after playing the England Lions at Worcester. Scans on Monday revealed he has a tear to his rib muscle. Other reports have described the injury as a strained abdominal muscle.

Kevin Pietersen commented on Lee’s absence saying it was “a huge, huge, huge loss” for Australia.

Australia now have to choose which player to pick as a replacement for Lee. Two likely options are spinner Nathan Hauritz or pace bowler Ben Hilfenhuas.

England will start their campaign on Wednesday to attempt to regain the ashes after Australia completed a 5-0 whitewash last time.

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