Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Ferguson knee injury worries Australia

Australia are awaiting news on the short-term future of Callum Ferguson after he wrenched his knee during the Champions Trophy final victory over New Zealand. Ferguson tripped in the field and injured his right knee and is expected to have scans when he arrives home this week.

When the incident occurred, Ferguson was worried he had torn the anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), which would be a repeat of an injury he first suffered in 2004, when he collided with his batting partner during a warm-up match for the Under-19 World Cup. Ricky Ponting said after Australia's win that Ferguson was prepared to bat in Australia's chase if required.

"He was very worried about it at the time because he's had a history of ACL problems, he's actually torn it before," Ponting said in the Age. "He was going to bat today if absolutely required but he was probably going to bat no higher than nine.

"It was stiffening up through the night but I made sure he was up on his feet and walking around. Full credit to him, he had his bat and gloves out ready to go if he was needed. We won't probably know [until the scans], but it didn't look that good."

Australia's next engagement is a one-day series in India starting later this month and it would be a blow to lose Ferguson, who has averaged 46.07 in 25 ODIs since his debut in February. There was also a concern over Peter Siddle, who suffered shortness of breath and an increased heartbeat during his ten overs against New Zealand.

Siddle has headed straight to India to play for Victoria in the Champions League Twenty20 and is likely to remain there for Australia's one-day series. Siddle's Champions Trophy efforts came immediately after an exhausting four-month tour of England and he faces another busy Australian summer. Ponting said it was less than ideal to have him racing from one tournament to another.

"I guess there's not much you can do about that," Ponting said. "The Champions League is scheduled right on top of this so they will fly out to India and play in a couple of days' time, and depending on how far they go they won't have much of a break before the one-dayers in India, then we are straight back into our summer. What we have managed to do over the last couple of years is look after player workloads, particularly fast bowlers' workloads, so we will keep a pretty close eye on him and see how he goes."

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