Australia fast bowler Josh Hazlewood will miss the remainder of the Border-Gavaskar Test series after failing to sufficiently recover from his left Achilles injury. Head coach Andrew McDonald confirmed that Hazlewood, who missed the Nagpur and Delhi Tests, will now continue his rehabilitation programme back in Sydney. The 32-year-old fast bowler has been beset by side strains in the last two seasons and picked up this Achilles injury on his comeback Test against South Africa in Sydney while running on the soggy patches of the SCG outfield.
While McDonald confirmed Hazlewood’s unavailability for the remainder of the series, he was less certain about David Warner’s status. The dynamic opener copped a blow to his elbow in the Delhi Test and was subsequently subbed out of the game with a concussion.
“Josh Hazlewood out, he’ll be going home,” McDonald said on Monday, a day after Australia went 0-2 down in the series. “[Warner]’s still sore at the moment. We had a meeting just before discussing this. We’re in no rush to make any decisions at this point in time around Davey. Just seeing how that settles, how functional that is.
“It will be basically how sore and how functional it is as to what decision we make with him and then the length of the injury. There’s some talk the length of injury could be anywhere between a week plus depending how that settles down. There’s a bit of unknown there. I’ll leave that to the medical team and they’ll inform me once they know.”
In Warner’s absence, Australia sent out Travis Head to open the second innings. It’s a role the left-hander is expected to hold on to in the event of Warner missing out after impressing with a counter-attacking 43. “If Dave’s unavailable it would make perfect sense,” McDonald said. “We did discuss before coming over here that if we were to lose an opening batter that Trav would be one we’d look to put up there. We feel in the subcontinental conditions that he can get off to the fast starts which he showed.
“We don’t see [Head] as an opener in all conditions, more subcontinental and in other conditions back to the middle order.”
Meanwhile, McDonald confirmed that all-rounder Cameron Green will be 100% fit to play in Indore after having been fairly close to making it for the Delhi Test too.
“He was close,” McDonald said. “It’s [about] building confidence. He had the setback in Bangalore, a little setback batting in Bangalore where he had some jarring and there was a fair bit of discomfort in that finger. If he didn’t have that, I think the second Test was real. But it probably just delayed it those few days.
“And we contemplated him as a concussion sub as well. So that was another discussion. But we felt like if he wasn’t right to go at the start then what was a couple of days. We’re better off loading up for the third Test match and in a good frame of mind.”