Lee unlikely for Edgbaston

Veteran fast bowler struggling to be fit for third Test

Last Updated: 22/07/09 7:18am

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Lee: Injury concern

Lee: Injury concern

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Australia coach Tim Nielsen has revealed he is still to make a decision on whether Brett Lee will be available to play in the third Test at Edgbaston.

"Two, three, four overs in the nets is probably not enough to prove that he is right to go."
Tim Nielsen on Brett Lee Quotes of the week

The 32-year-old fast bowler did not feature at Cardiff or Lord's due to a side injury and, with Australia now trailing the series 1-0, it had been hoped that he would be back by the end of July.

However, he has yet to bowl a ball since taking six wickets against England Lions last month and, while he could yet take part in the tour match against Northamptonshire which starts on Friday, Nielsen has suggested that they may not take the risk.

"We will see how we go," he said. "We are progressing him.

"The positive thing is that in a tour game we do have the flexibility on how much we can bowl him or how much we don't bowl him.

Strength

"He hasn't bowled yet, so we just have to sit with the medical staff over the next few days and chat about how much we need to get into him and whether it is going to progress him to the stage where he could play in the third Test.

"My feeling is if it is not going to mean he is available to play in the third Test match, we are going to have to be really careful about rushing him back."

He added: "The injury that he has is a bowling-specific injury and history shows if you have those injuries again it tends to be six, eight, 10 weeks before they come right if you actually re-tear the side.

"Two, three, four overs in the nets is probably not enough to prove that he is right to go.

"If he had to bowl say 11 overs in a row, like Andrew Flintoff did yesterday, to win a Test match for us, we would want to be comfortable that he is strong and fit enough and able to do it."

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