Michael Clarke deemed fit enough to play in Boxing Day Test

Australian skipper Michael Clarke
Australian skipper Michael Clarke

UPDATE: MICHAEL Clarke will play in the Boxing Day Test.

And the Australian skipper will not have to test his hamstring too much early after Sri Lankan skipper Mahela Jayawardene won the toss and chose to bat on an MCG strip that looks likely to offer some early assistance to the hosts' pacemen.

Just 11 days after injuring his hamstring in the first Test against Sri Lanka, the Australian skipper has this morning pulled up well from fitness tests on Christmas Day and has been declared fit.

Clarke has maintained, read hoped, he would be fit since hobbling off retired hurt during the first innings in Hobart.

But even the skipper wasn't convinced until waking well today from a searching series of workouts yesterday.


Michael Clarke will prove himself in Boxing Day Test

AUSTRALIAN skipper Michael Clarke will be given as long as possible to prove his fitness for today's Boxing Day Test at the MCG against Sri Lanka.

Clarke injured his hamstring against the tourists while batting in the first test at Hobart in the second innings.

Usman Khawaja has been called in to the squad on standby if the skipper does not make it in time.

Coach Mickey Arthur, who will delay naming the final team until the toss of the coin this morning, rated Clark 50-50 at a press conference on Monday, but the man himself was not ruling himself out.

"It's going okay and improving every day, that's for sure," Clarke said.

"I have got a little time up my sleeve.

"My mindset hasn't changed and I am really confident that I am doing everything I can to give myself the best chance I can of playing."

Clarke said the decision on whether he played in the Test or not wasn't just about this game.

"The decision whether I play or not isn't that simple," he said.

"It's also making sure I am fit for the Sydney Test, the one-dayers and then the tour of India.

"We have a lot of cricket coming up, so I have got to understand and take the emotion out of it a little bit and listen to the experts.

"But at this stage we are pretty happy with the improvement I have made."

Fast bowler Jackson Bird is set to make his debut for Australia after Mitchell Starc was rested as part of the controversial rotation policy.

Bird will join Mitchell Johnson, Peter Siddle and Nathan Lyon in the Aussie attack.

Topics:  australia boxing day test cricket michael clarke

SUV passenger attacks pedestrian in city assault

Police Remembrance Day march to Brown's Park in North Ipswich on Thursday.

The assault is alleged to have occurred at about 10am in Ipswich

This week's community billboard

Learn woodworking and crafting with the Ipswich Woodcrafts Club.

A daily guide to what's on in Ipswich over the next seven days

Readers love Selina's "stunner"

Here is this week's Facebook cover image as chosen by you.

Congratulations Selina Boyle

Local Partners

Workmates honour crash victim with tribute

UPDATE: Tanya Lyell is being remembered as a young mother dedicated to her family and work as the town she called home mourns its loss.

This week's community billboard

Learn woodworking and crafting with the Ipswich Woodcrafts Club.

A daily guide to what's on in Ipswich over the next seven days

Community garden set for Palmwoods

Kay Nixon at the Palmwoods Community Gardens will be hosting a launch day and inviting the ecommunity to come along and sign up.

Parcel of land to supply sustainable gardening for community

Things to do this week

Dragon play Ipswich Civic Centre on Friday October 28

What's on in Ipswich

Steve Irwin's final days through dad's eyes

Bob Irwin with his son Steve.

'You never expect that’s the last time you’re going to see your son'

Kristie doesn't mind being the third wheel in Survivor final

Kristie Bennett in a scene from Australian Survivor.

SOLO player will take on Survivor's power couple Lee and El tonight.

Scary hoping Posh and Sporty will re-join The Spice Girls

Mel B

Mel B hoping Victoria Beckham, Mel C will re-join The Spice Girls

REVIEW: Michael McIntyre has Brisbane in stitches

Michael McIntyre in a scene from his TV series Michael McIntyre's Comedy Roadshow.

BRITISH comedian is in the country on his Happy and Glorious Tour.

Cliff Richard doesn't need Rod Stewart's help with legal bills

Sir Cliff Richard

"'Don't worry, I'm loaded. I won't keep you to it.' "

Look at me! Kath and Kim home up for sale

Kath and Kim from the iconic Aussie TV series.

'Crack open the Baileys and grab a box of BBQ Shapes'

How to fit 100,000 new homes on the Coast

Property, real estate, housing, suburb,  August 2016

Fitting 2m extra people in south-east Qld in 25 years a balance

Hinterland horse stud passed in for $8.25 million

UNREAL: This Maleny estate is incredible.

12-bedroom hinterland horse stud still available

Hit songwriter's Noosa mansion on market

SPECIAL PLACE: The Cintamani estate is going to tender, marketed by Tom Offermann Real Estate.

Is this Queensland's best property?

Kiwi siblings snap up Dotcom mansion for $32.5m

The new toy company owners of the Coatesville mansion want replace any controversy with positivity and fun. Photo / Barfoot and Thompson

The trio paid $32.5 million for the property in June

New $200 million development will create 580 jobs

Cassie And Josh with baby Alfie and daughter Andee. They have bought at new Lennox Head development Epiq.

Majority of new positions will be given to Northern Rivers locals