New Zealand in Australia 2008-09 February 13, 2009

Injured Clarke and Johnson to miss Twenty20

Cricinfo staff

Michael Clarke's back injury will keep him out of the Twenty20 against New Zealand © Getty Images

Michael Clarke's back injury has forced him out of the Twenty20 against New Zealand in Sydney on Sunday and he will be replaced by Victoria's Rob Quiney. Mitchell Johnson will also miss the game due to an ankle problem and the pair will rest ahead of Monday's departure to South Africa.

Brad Haddin will lead the team while Cameron White will be his deputy. "It's unfortunate that Michael Clarke has been forced to miss the game due to injury," Andrew Hilditch, the chairman of selectors, said. "Given the side leaves for South Africa the morning after the game in Sydney, there was really no alternative but to take a conservative approach to management of this minor injury.

"It does present a great opportunity for Rob Quiney to join the Australian squad. Rob has performed well in Twenty20 cricket this year, with probably the highlight being his excellent innings in the Big Bash final."

Australia's physiotherapist Alex Kountouris said: "Michael Clarke has been experiencing back pain since the one-day game in Adelaide this week. While he's made some improvement over the last three or four days, the decision has been made to withdraw him from the Twenty20 game on Sunday in order to maximise his recovery time in advance of Australia's tour of South Africa.

"Mitchell has a niggling injury to his right ankle, which has been causing him discomfort." Johnson received a cortisone injection but is expected to be fit for the tour game in Potchefstroom next week.