Noffke makes last-minute IPL dash
Ashley Noffke will warm up for his Test tour of West Indies with a brief stint in the Indian Premier League (IPL) after Bangalore picked him to replace the injured Nathan Bracken. Noffke leaves for India on Tuesday but must be back in Brisbane in early May for Australia's training camp ahead of the Caribbean series.
Noffke did not originally nominate for either of the IPL auctions and intended to stay focused on his push for international honours. But after he was confirmed for the West Indies trip and named in Cricket Australia's 25-man squad of contracted players for 2008-09, Noffke decided a short Twenty20 spell could be beneficial.
"It's a pretty exciting proposition to go up against so many good players," Noffke said. "I'm taking the view that it will be good for my development as a player as well as a chance to get some bowling under my belt ahead of the Windies tour."
Noffke's last-minute dash to India means he will be available for Bangalore's opening clash against Kolkata on Friday. If selected, that could pit Noffke against the Australia captain Ricky Ponting as well as the newly-contracted David Hussey.
He will also be free to play three more IPL games before heading home for the training camp. Bracken, who is still recovering after having knee surgery in March, will be assessed prior to the ODI tour of West Indies to determine whether he can take part.