Australia in Sri Lanka 2003-04 February 8, 2004

Bevan passed fit for Sri Lanka

Wisden Cricinfo staff

Michael Bevan has declared himself fit enough to take part in this month's one-day tour of Sri Lanka.

Bevan had seemed unlikely to tour after aggravating a cracked rib while batting in the VB Series against Zimbabwe at the MCG, and he was forced out of Australia's final three matches - including today's series-clinching victory at Sydney.

But Bevan was examined by the Australian team doctor Trefor James in Melbourne yesterday morning, and after returning to Sydney for a 30-minute practice in the SCG nets, he proclaimed himself available for the tour party. "He is right to play," said Bevan's manager Robert Joske. "It's now in the hands of the selectors."

It would be a major surprise if Bevan was not named in the squad. The only other issue for the selectors is whether to take a second wicketkeeper to take some of the strain off Adam Gilchrist. The Aussie selectors are conscious of his high workload, and do not want to force him into early retirement.

"He is a match-winner and we have to preserve that sort of thing for as long as we can," said Trevor Hohns, the chairman of selectors. "Let's face it - he doesn't get injured very often and he plays in nearly every game Australia plays in, playing both forms of the game."

Probable squad Matthew Hayden, Adam Gilchrist (wk), Ricky Ponting (capt), Damien Martyn, Andrew Symonds, Simon Katich, Michael Clarke, Brett Lee, Jason Gillespie, Brad Williams, Brad Hogg, Michael Kasprowicz, Michael Bevan, Brad Haddin (wk)