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Clarke - Lee merits place

Injured paceman backed to make one-day return

Support: Clarke (left) and Lee

Australia vice-captain Michael Clarke believes Brett Lee can reclaim his place in the one-day team - provided is able to regain full fitness.

"His statistics don't lie. In all three forms he's a wonderful player and has been for a long time for Australia, so, if he's fully fit, I'm sure he'll make his way back into any form of the game."

Michael Clarke

Quotes of the week

Lee has announced his retirement from Tests in order to concentrate on the shorter forms of the international game.

And Clarke is confident, if the New South Wales fast bowler can get back to full fitness, he will remain a valuable part of the Australia set-up.

"I think he's still facing a tough challenge to get his elbow right and see if he can come out and go back to bowling how he used to bowl," Clarke said.

"But his statistics don't lie. In all three forms he's a wonderful player and has been for a long time for Australia, so, if he's fully fit, I'm sure he'll make his way back into any form of the game."

Painful

Lee faces a lengthy rehabilitation following surgery on his elbow in December.

The 33-year-old described the injury as the "most painful" of a Test career that saw him claim 310 wickets but was undermined by injury in recent years.

He missed last year's Ashes series defeat after picking up a side strain in the tour game against England Lions on the eve of the first Test and has not worn the baggy green since the 2008 Boxing Day Test against South Africa.

"Obviously I wish him all the success with his future but he's still going to be playing international cricket so I'm looking forward to him getting back on the park and getting out there and representing Australia again," Clarke added.