Australian paceman Brett Lee faces a four-to-six week lay-off after fracturing his foot in a Twenty20 match against India.

The 35 year-old fast bowler, second on the list of Australian One Day International wicket takers behind Glenn McGrath, was struck by the ball during the last over of his spell at the MCG on Friday night.

Australia subsequently slumped to an eight-wicket defeat, and team doctor Trefor James explained how Lee’s foot became swollen the following day.

An X-ray later confirmed he had fractured a small toe, prompting the call-up of Ben Hilfenhaus whose last ODI appearance came in 2009.

Lee has taken nearly 700 wickets in all formats of the game for his country, and despite retiring from Test matches in 2010 still plays a starring role in the shorter versions of the game.

Fellow fast bowler Mitchell Johnson, meanwhile, has pinpointed a summer return from his foot injury.
The left-arm paceman required surgery on his foot in December following Australia’s tour of South Africa, and he has targeted the ODI series against England in June and July as the stage for his international comeback.

Before then, the 30 year-old will build up his form and fitness in the Indian Premier League after being purchased by the Mumbai Indians for $300,000 in Saturday’s auction.
The Queenslander has turned down lucrative IPL offers in the past to concentrate on international cricket, but after a lengthy spell on the sidelines he feels the intense burst will be of great benefit.

“”It’s a perfect opportunity for me coming back from injury to play the shorter form of the game to build up my bowling,” he said. Johnson also revealed his intention to continue playing for Australia for at least the next five years.

About the Author