Australian injury news January 21, 2009

Symonds set to return from knee surgery

Cricinfo staff

Andrew Symonds struggled with a knee injury in the Tests against South Africa © AFP

Andrew Symonds could be back in the Queensland side as early as next week if his return to club cricket this weekend goes to plan. On Saturday, Symonds will make his comeback from knee surgery when he turns out for Gold Coast and if all goes well he will play in the Sheffield Shield match against Western Australia starting next Friday.

Symonds struggled with the knee problem during the Perth and Melbourne Tests against South Africa and there were times when he was clearly hampered and unable to reach full speed in the field. However, the injury was not considered serious and he began running last week, less than a month after the operation.

"I have been sent the medical reports and they show he is well ahead of time," the Queensland coach Trevor Barsby told the Courier-Mail. "The knee problem just came from wear and tear over the years and the surgeons scraped the knee, fixed some floating bone and did some general maintenence.

"Reading the medical reports has given me a lot of confidence he will be back playing top-level cricket very soon. He should be available for the Shield game next week and we will play him just as a batsman."

Symonds is one of several senior members of Australia's squad who are currently sidelined for the remainder of the one-day series against South Africa. Brett Lee, Shane Watson, Michael Clarke and Stuart Clark are all unavailable due to injury and the captain Ricky Ponting said it was a challenging time for his fresh-looking side.

"The cricket we have played in the first two one-dayers has been pretty good as well," Ponting said at a promotional event on Wednesday. "So I think we have actually done a remarkable job if you look at all the blokes that are out and you are playing against South Africa who are a pretty good one-day side. For us to do what we have done shows a lot about the next generation of players."