Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
Australia captain Michael Clarke retired hurt on 60 when he injured his back on the first day of the first Test against India at the Adelaide Oval.
It is still unknown how serious the injury is, but Clarke may miss the rest of the first Test in an attempt to try and be fully fit in time for the second Test, which gets underway on December 17 in Brisbane.
The injury occurred when Clarke twisted around slightly to avoid a short-pitched delivery from India pace bower Ishant Sharma.
As soon as he twisted, Clarke grimaced in pain and and lay down on the ground to try and stretch his back. However, since he seemed to be in even more pain when he did that, team doctor Peter Brukner and physiotherapist Alex Kountouris came running out to help him.
But, after stretching again and having a brief consultation, Clarke decided to retire hurt instead of trying to carry on.
“Everyone was working together with the same thing in mind to try to get Michael recovered and fit and ready to play,” Cricket Australia CEO James Sutherland told ABC Radio shortly after Clarke suffered the injury. “There may well have been some slightly different views about what was best in terms of preparation, but really that’s all a moot point now.
“Things have moved on, we’ve seen the extraordinary and tragic circumstances of Phillip’s death and we hope Michael’s okay and he’s back on the ground very soon. It’s always a worrying sign when the Australian captain’s carrying any sort of injury. We’ll leave it in the capable hands of Alex Kountouris and he can weave a bit of magic overnight perhaps.”
In the past, Clarke revealed that he has been suffering from back problems since the age of 17.
“I had my first scan at 17 that said I had degeneration in my disc,” Clarke told the media last year. “I have been able to manage it this long, I don’t see any reason why I can’t continue to manage it for the rest of my career.
“It’s a combination of things, my back gets irritated when I’m in flexion and I rotate. Sometimes with degeneration of the disc, it can flare up.”