Watson, Shaun Marsh doubtful for ODIs

Shane Watson started the tour of South Africa in fine style AFP

Allrounder Shane Watson is a doubtful starter for the ODI series against South Africa that begins on October 19, after straining his hip muscle. With batsman Shaun Marsh also picking up an injury during Sunday's Twenty20, Cricket Australia has named Cameron White to the ODI squad as cover.

"Shane Watson is recovering from a hip muscle strain which caused him to miss yesterday's second Twenty20 match," Australia's physiotherapist Alex Kountouris said. "He will continue with treatment and we will assess him over the next 24 hours, before a decision is made on his availability for the first ODI game on Wednesday."

Watson has had few injury concerns recently. He was last unfit during the 2009 Ashes, when he had an issue with his thigh. Later that year, he experienced a niggle during Australia's one-day series in India, but managed to play with his physio Victor Popov's help. After a tough tour of Sri Lanka in August-September Watson had questioned whether his body would be able to handle the rigours of bowling regularly and opening the batting and, in order to protect him for international cricket, had a bowling ban placed on him by CA for the Champions League T20.

Marsh had hurt his shoulder while fielding in the second Twenty20, but it was a minor concern Kountouris said. "Shaun Marsh injured his left shoulder when diving in the field during the game at the Wanderers. He has undergone scans today [Monday] in Johannesburg, which have cleared him of any major damage, and he will be assessed closer to the game [the first ODI]."

White was dropped from Australia's ODI squad mid-way through the three-match series against Bangladesh in April, after failing to go past 24 in his last ten innings. In the T20s against South Africa, in which he captained Australia, White contributed handy cameos of 28 and 39.