Sport

Usman waiting in wings as injury dogs Clarke

Usman Khawaja of the Thunder bats during the Big Bash League match between the Sydney Thunder and the Melbourne Renegades at ANZ Stadium on December 14, 2012 in Sydney, Australia.
Usman Khawaja of the Thunder bats during the Big Bash League match between the Sydney Thunder and the Melbourne Renegades at ANZ Stadium on December 14, 2012 in Sydney, Australia. Mark Nolan / Getty Images

QUEENSLAND batsman Usman Khawaja has been placed on standby for Australian captain Michael Clarke for the Boxing Day Test.

And paceman Jackson Bird has been called into the squad to replace fellow injured Tasmanian quick Ben Hilfenhaus.

Bird looms as a likely 12th man with Mitchell Johnson almost certain to step into the starting XI after missing out in Hobart.

Speaking after Australia bowled out Sri Lanka on the last day of the first Test, Clarke said it was too early to know how his injured hamstring would respond to treatment.

"It's a strain ... to what level I don't know," Clarke said.

"I've got seven or eight days leading up to the Boxing Day Test. I'm really confident I'll give myself every opportunity to be right."

The skipper said he had not seen much of Khawaja's recent efforts at the domestic level, but said his performances at Sheffield Shield level warranted him being next in line.

He used a similar argument to justify Bird's inclusion.

"At the end of the day if you're putting good numbers on the board you put yourself in line to play for Australia," Clarke said.

"Jackson is the leading wicket taker in first class cricket this year. That was the main reason for including him in the squad."

Clarke wasn't prepared to buy into the allegations of ball tampering levelled against man-of-the-match Peter Siddle, raised after televison footage raised questions about whether the fast bowler was using his thumbnail to potentially rough up one side of the ball.

"We play in the spirit of the game. We play very hard on the field ... I don't believe we cross the line," Clarke said.

Siddle also laughed off the suggestion, while Sri Lankan captain Mahela Jayawardene said he was happy to move on if match officials found no isue.

Late yesterday the ICC issued a statement saying the matter had been investigated and there was no evidence to suggest the condition of the ball had been changed.

Jayawardene also said he was pleased with the way his players fought out the mathc in difficult conditions against "a very good team", but added improvement was needed in a couple of key areas.

"We were not consistent with our bowling in certain situations, and we need to put more runs on the board in the first innings," he said.

The skipper singled out Siddle as the player who changed the course of the game on the final day, taking two crucial wickets just after tea.

"At tea it was pretty much even. We had 30-35 overs to bat and two batsmen 'in', but we lost two wickets in the space of six or seven overs," Jayawardena said.

 

Australian squad for Boxing Day Test

  • Michael Clarke (c)
  • Shane Watson (v-c)
  • Ed Cowan
  • David Warner
  • Mike Hussey
  • Mitchell Starc
  • Jackson Bird
  • Usman Khawaja
  • Nathan Lyon
  • Peter Siddle
  • Matthew Wade
  • Mitchell Johnson
  • Phillip Hughes

Topics:  australia boxing day test cricket michael clarke usman khawaja



How to survive a bushfire in your car

IT SOUNDS like a nightmare, but it can happen.

Eight reasons to join the RFS

SPREAD across 93% of Queensland, the Rural Fire Service has about 36,000 volunteers. And you could be one of them.

What if my insurer gives me grief?

CLAIMING your insurance cover after a natural disaster can go one of two ways. It can be a breeze, or like pulling teeth.

INSIDE STORY: Disused pipeline stops hundreds from building

TRAIL OF TEARS: Route of the disused Santos oil pipeline which is stopping hundreds of Ipswich residents from building.

Santos responds but Tully says easements issue must be addressed

Storm text messages sent out after storm

Saturday's storm forced the Marburg Christmas Carnival to be postponed.

Weatherzone to probe what caused 'technical fault'

Four people killed in region over horror weekend

TRAGIC: Toowoomba man Scott Stallman, with wife Monique, was one of four killed in our region at the weekend.

Police warn to take care on the road in the lead up to Christmas

Local Partners

FLOOD RISK: Mayors launch plan to protect $260M industry

A COMPREHENSIVE plan to deal with the flood risk to rivers and lakes in the Lockyer Valley has been launched.


Top 5 Christmas events around Ipswich

The Twighlight Christmas Parade was just the first of many events around the region.

THERE are plenty of exciting Christmas activities coming up.

It's official, Christmas has started in Ipswich

TIS THE SEASON: Plenty of families got into the holiday spirit at the Christmas Twilight Parade.

PHOTOS: Annual Twilight Parade draws hundreds, more events to come

What's on this weekend

Artist Eric Lennartson is in the process of completing his huge tape sculpture at the Ipswich Art Gallery.

Things to do in Ipswich

Seacrest: Things are "going better" for Kim and Kanye

Ryan Seacrest says things are "going better now" for Kanye West

Top 5 Christmas events around Ipswich

The Twighlight Christmas Parade was just the first of many events around the region.

THERE are plenty of exciting Christmas activities coming up.

Jonah Hill involved in a car accident

Jonah Hill was involved in a car crash on Saturday

Katie Holmes' empowering directorial debut

Katie Holmes

KATIE Holmes as made her directorial debut

Jennifer Lawrence gives keys to new partner

Oscar winner Jennifer Lawrence

Oscar winner settling down with new partner

Rogue One star proud to lead new Star Wars film

Felicity Jones leads the new Star Wars film

Star Wars lead proud to be in front in sci-fi

Prices jump in trio of mining towns

THE boost in coal prices in the past six months has triggered a house price jump in at least three mining towns in Central Queensland.

Boost in coal prices triggers a market turnaround

INSIDE STORY: Disused pipeline stops hundreds from building

TRAIL OF TEARS: Route of the disused Santos oil pipeline which is stopping hundreds of Ipswich residents from building.

Santos responds but Tully says easements issue must be addressed

Chinese locked out of Australian property market

The rules are different if you're a foreigner

The buyer was from China - the trouble started right there

Morrison signs off on new affordable rental model

Australia's Treasurer Scott Morrison speaks during a press conference after a meeting of the Council of Federal Financial Relations at Parliament House in Canberra, Friday, Dec. 2, 2016.

Scott Morrison signed off on development of a new financing model

New 1200-seat Mormon church to open in Ipswich

COMMUNITY: Barbara MacDonald of Springfield Lakes with her children from left, Jacob, 6, Charlotte, 2, Joseph, 4, Emily, 9, and Lachlan, 8, outside the newly built Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints at Augustine Heights.

One of Australia's largest Mormon churches will open this month

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!