Australia news January 31, 2016

Lehmann still awaiting medical clearance

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Darren Lehmann: 'Until medical clearance comes through that I can fly, I'll have to wait and see. But feeling a lot better' Andrew Matthews / © PA Photos

Australia's coach Darren Lehmann remains marooned in Sydney awaiting medical clearance to fly after his deep vein thrombosis scare, and is no certainty to travel to New Zealand for the Test series that could give his side the world No. 1 ranking.

While Lehmann, his players and Cricket Australia are all equally eager for him to return to the team, longer-term considerations will play a part in their thinking. Following New Zealand are the longer trips to South Africa and then India for the World T20. One factor in favour of Lehmann going to New Zealand for the Tests are a pair of longer stays in Wellington and Christchurch, with the option of driving between the two venues.

Having faced his second bout of DVT following an earlier instance in 2007, Lehmann said he would be taking greater precautions when travelling in future, whether that meant wearing skins on flights, moving around the cabin more often or no longer making a habit of falling asleep whenever the plane left the tarmac.

"Still recovering from the DVT but for me it's just about hopefully get medical clearance later on in the week and see where we go from there and join the New Zealand crew," Lehmann said. "But until medical clearance comes through that I can fly, I'll have to wait and see. But feeling a lot better.

"I've had it before, so I knew straightaway what was going to happen, it was straight to hospital and then in overnight and straight onto the thinning tablets now. It's a case of getting the blood right. Having been through it before you know what's happening.

"Now the specialists are pretty comfortable they'll get it under control. End of the day I sleep on the plane, I probably shouldn't be sleeping too much and moving around [more], but it's one of those things, in our job you fly a lot. You've just got to be careful."

Watching Australia's T20 travails from a distance has been difficult for Lehmann, who said his television was still working "just" after successive defeats in the first two matches of the India series. He agreed that Australia's short-form team needed more continuity to perform at a higher level, but was unsure of how that might be achieved.

"They don't play that often together, scheduling's a tough one for us, we're getting prepared for New Zealand which is an important one for us as well," he said. "The World T20 is just around the corner, so you've got to find the best solution somewhere so we're got some guys in New Zealand, some guys here, we're rewarding good performances in the BBL and having a look at some young guys. It's a tough one, but we're really confident going into the World T20.

"Where do you fit it in? One-dayers are just as important, we just had a World Cup last year. Test matches are equally important. So it's trying to find the right balance and that's always a hard thing for scheduling. You'd love to have a big lead-in, we haven't, can't do much about that. With the three games in South Africa with our squad and then the World Cup, it is what it is."

As for news that the former Michael Clarke is making his return to cricket after a five-month sabbatical, Lehmann said he was happy whenever one of the "greats of the game" showed a desire to get back involved. "I spoke to him this morning," Lehmann said. "He'll play this grade game in February and see where it takes him from there.

"It's great to have one of the greats back. He's obviously missed the game, loves the game, pleased for him to be starting back in club cricket and see where it goes from there. That's what we want from the older guys, staying in the game. Let him get back and play some cricket and see where it takes him."

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @danbrettig

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • johnthekiwi on February 2, 2016, 22:06 GMT

    Be careful Boof. The guy I started our company with is a super fit 40 yo who was actually born with an undiagnosed congenital defect that meant he was absent certain vasculature and it was only a matter of time when the collateral veins he had built up couldn't maintain. We had to carry him up the walkway at Logan when we were out in Boston and he ended up in the Mayo for two weeks. He has had multiple surgeries since then. He still flies but is under a lot of supervision and gets a whole lot of drugs. The job isn't worth your life. @Godees: It is fair to say that CA has a different set of priorities. Fiscally I suspect T20 vs. ODI is a somewhat of a wash although the removal of a test was disgusting (whether it was replaced by either shorter form). Maybe you should look at it as 2.5 times the practice for T20 games. The players get to wear colored clothes, hit a white ball and play on surfaces (for Oz) that are less familiar to them and can set slogging goals in five 10 over cohorts.

  • GoDees on February 1, 2016, 22:41 GMT

    Sorry bus this one day series is a complete waste of time and is purely in place to generate revenue. There is a world cup in a few months time so why aren't we playing as much T20 cricket as possible? Look at India's schedule for the next few months, they don't play anything but T20 cricket until the world cup which is the perfect preparation as it allows selectors to analyse players more, builds continuity in the team as well as giving younger players more experience at the international level which is exactly what players like Lynn, Head, Boland etc all need.

  • Cricinfouser on February 1, 2016, 22:23 GMT

    @Editor: "As for news that the former Michael Clarke is making his return to cricket...". I think you will find that he is STILL Michael Clarke. He hasn't turned into anyone else.

  • ThreePIllarTales on February 1, 2016, 14:36 GMT

    just keep healthy mate... we love our cricket BUT it's still only just a game ! Di Venuto is too technical still while Alfie would karate chop too many guys if you're gone too long. He's seriously got WA players mojo back after scaring them half to death ! Carn oz !

  • YorkshirePudding on February 1, 2016, 14:22 GMT

    Wishing Lehmann a speedy recovery, but it must cast doubts on his ability to travel especially to places like England and the WI's as they are by far the longest flights on the Aussie Calendar.

    RE : Clarke, I don't see why a poster is mentioning him playing in grade cricket, and if that helps him stay fit with a view to IPL/BBL and other T20 leagues fair game to the bloke.

  • Behind_the_bowlers_arm on February 1, 2016, 14:11 GMT

    So ... Australia even had the second string coach for the t20's. With blood thinning tablets and making sure he moves around on flights he should be fine.

  • Sunil_Batra on February 1, 2016, 11:53 GMT

    Boof is a legend and best coach i have seen, hope he comes back soon as we need him for world cup and ashes beyond that, he has done a true turnaround for Aus cricket

  • Rahul_78 on February 1, 2016, 6:04 GMT

    Leehman has been terrific coach for Australia. He brought back the real Australian spirit into the Australian cricket which was somewhere lost between Buchanan and Arthurs. It is very unfortunate that he has been diagnosed with a illness that is very hard to manage in today's jet setting world of professional cricket. These guys literally live their life on flights, buses and hotels. Travel is a constant companion. Today's cricket calendar is jam packed and there is no respite. It will be extremely difficult for Boof to manage his duties. And in the end cricket is just a game. Health is paramount for anyone. It is sad but can't see Boof carrying on too much with his current Aussie duties. Aussies will certainly hope that he will continue to offer his services in some other capacity to Australian cricket. Still hope and wish that he recovers soon and carry on as a coach for Aussies. Game of cricket is better for it.

  • Behind_the_bowlers_arm on February 1, 2016, 0:07 GMT

    No. The reason he is playing grade cricket is that he loves playing and his back is better. He has said he will play grade cricket, train the winter & then look at the next Big Bash. His role in the t20 World Cup will be at the airport welcoming home the victorious Australian team.

  • chandrava on January 31, 2016, 6:51 GMT

    Is michael clarke eying a spot in the squad for t20 world cup??.he had retired from international cricket and i dont a see areason for him to play grade cricket.well, in the circumstances i womt be suprised to see him leading the team to world t20 in india.lol

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