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Lehmann and the national selectors do not want to take any chances with Clarke, Harris and Siddle
Australia’s national selectors have withdrawn captain Michael Clarke and the pace duo of Ryan Harris and Peter Siddle from their Sheffield Shield matches this week as they do not want any of them to succumb to an injury just days before the start of the Ashes series.
While many of the Australia’s other players have been given the green light to play another round of Sheffield Shield cricket, the withdrawn trio will head to the new high-performance facility in Brisbane to start preparing for the first Ashes Test at the Gabba on November 21.
“We’re very pleased with Michael’s preparation ahead of the first Test,” Australia coach Darren Lehmann said. “The plan for his Ashes build-up was to play two Sheffield Shield matches, which he has done successfully. He has spent valuable time in the middle batting and fielding. Importantly his back has coped well in both matches, but we will continue to take a sensible and cautious approach to managing him.”
Lehmann and the national selectors will also be paying a lot of attention to both Harris and Siddle, especially since they have already lost James Pattinson, Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Jackson Bird and Josh Hazlewood to injuries.
“On the fast bowling front, Ryan and Peter are both in great condition,” Lehmann said. “As part of their management plan they will continue their preparation under the guidance national coaching staff in Brisbane over the coming days.”