Broken thumb hurts Simon Katich

Simon Katich ducks under a short ball Associated Press

Simon Katich has added to Australia's injury concerns ahead of the Ashes as he battles to recover from a broken thumb. Katich suffered the fracture in India at the start of the month, but did not realise how bad it was until after he returned home to Sydney.

The problem is hampering Katich's preparation, although he hopes to be available for New South Wales' Sheffield Shield game against Victoria from November 10. The opening Test of the Ashes series begins in Brisbane on November 25.

"The specialist said there was no point having surgery because I'd be out for some time so we just have to see how it settles down," Katich told the Australian. Katich is struggling with the injury when he bats and was originally given a recovery time of between three and six weeks.

"It definitely hindered me during the first Test in Mohali," Katich said. "I felt like I was batting one-handed. It felt better in the second Test but the big problem was it affected my preparation. I had to stop hitting balls."

While Katich managed 110 runs in the 2-0 defeat in India, he remains a crucial figure for Australia and his opening partnership with Shane Watson has guided the side through some tough times. Australia also have question marks over Brad Haddin (elbow), Peter Siddle (back), Ryan Harris (knee) and Doug Bollinger (stomach) as the Ashes approaches.