CWC 15: Big Sri Lankan challenge awaits Australia

Australia is still a side looked at as big CWC contenders despite a tight squeeze in Pool A heading towards the finals.

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The Australian media slammed the performance of the side following their batting collapse and eventual narrow lose to New Zealand last Saturday.

Despite Australia’s bounce back coming against an associate nation, Australia returned to their dominant best yesterday against the U.A.E in Perth.

Posting 417 batting first, Australia never looked anything but certain and thumped the U.A.E by a record 275-runs.

Warner blasted 178, before Glenn Maxwell bashed 88.

Mitchell Johnson took 4 wickets with the ball, pace bowlers Josh Hazlewood and Mitch Starc joined with two wickets each.

Shane Watson has been dropped from the side for the returning power of James Faulkner, though Faulkner failed to deliver in his first match back.

Australia currently sit third in Pool A, and if they beat Sri Lanka on Sunday, will qualify for the quarter finals, where they could play South Africa, and if successful in that bout, a potential rematch with New Zealand back at Eden Park.

Sri Lanka are fresh off a dominant victory over England in Wellington last Sunday.

Sunday’s clash against Sri Lanka will be crucial for the Australian’s to win and win well.

Caution must be taken with Michael Clarke returning in test

Michael Clarke could return to the crease today after taking painkiller injections overnight for his back injury which is said to be a disc issue.

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Clarke left the field yesterday with back spasms and was at a local hospital receiving treatment for much of the afternoon.

Word out of Australia prior to play today is that Michael Clarke has been batting in the nets and is desperate to get back to the crease at some point either this morning or this afternoon.

But to be honest, while the Australian skipper is obviously showing some terrific guts in his bid to get back on the field today, caution needs to be taken with a return to the crease today and the decision must be weighed heavily.

The injuries are becoming more and more frequent which is what is most concerning.

Clarke was originally ruled out of opening test against India but passed a late test to make the side.

It is clear that Clarke’s determination to play is largely in part to the passing of Phil Hughes. Clarke wants to get a century and he wants to get it in this match especially.

With the Cricket World Cup just over 60 days away, what is the risk of Clarke suffering another and potentially more damaging injury between now and then if he forces his body to play on with just a temporary fix?

You’d have to say there is a high chance.

It remains to be seen if Clarke will take the field in Adelaide today, but word out of the Australian camp is that he is desperate.