Australia all-rounder Shane Watson has been ruled out of the upcoming ODI tri-series against Zimbabwe and South Africa after injuring his ankle during a training session in Brisbane on Saturday.
Watson, who stepped on a ball and rolled his ankle, will be replaced by Phillip Hughes, who recently became the first Australian to score a double century in a List A game.
“Shane today unfortunately sprained his right ankle at training, damaging an ankle ligament,” Australia physiotherapist Alex Kountouris said. “His ankle is currently swollen and sore, but [he is] expected to recover with a period of rest.
“Due to the compact nature of the tour, we’ve made a decision that Shane would be unlikely to recover sufficiently in time for the series. He will return to Sydney in coming days to continue his recovery and be ready for the tour of the UAE.”
Australia’s chairman of selectors, Rod Marsh, added: “With Shane ruled out for the tour, the national selection panel clearly feels the natural player to come in is Phil Hughes. As I’ve said previously, Phil was unlucky not to be picked in the initial squad after showing some great form in the Australia A series and was the natural choice to come in for Shane.
“The NSP is very happy with the bowling depth in the squad but Watson’s absence has meant another top-order batsman is necessary.”