Appendicitis rules Lee out of South Africa tour
Brett Lee, the Australia fast bowler, has been ruled out of the South Africa tour due to appendicitis. He will undergo surgery in Cape Town on Monday night and is expected to be out of cricket for six to eight weeks. Australia are yet to name a replacement for Lee in the one-day and Twenty20 squads.
"Brett complained of some abdominal pain after arriving in Cape Town on Sunday," Alex Kountoris, Australia team physiotherapist said. "After consulting specialists and having the relevant investigations he has been diagnosed with appendicitis. He will obviously be ruled out of the Twenty20 and ODI series in South Africa."
A replacement player for Lee will be named "in due course" but it is likely that Australia will want to add some experience to their bowling attack. With Patrick Cummins and James Pattinson included in the squad, Lee and Doug Bollinger were the two old hands in the T20 line-up with Mitchell Johnson joining up with the squad for the ODIs.
Lee's illness could mean Johnson is flown in earlier but it may also open the door for Peter Siddle, who has only played two international T20s, to make his mark in the limited-overs formats. Other options include Ryan Harris, who recovered from a hamstring strain after the recent Sri Lanka series but has been talked about as a Test match only player or one of Trent Copeland or Mitchell Starc, who played against South Africa A in a tri-series in Zimbabwe in June.