The Victoria paceman Clint McKay has been called into the Australian squad for the second Test against West Indies after Ben Hilfenhaus was ruled out with knee soreness. The team's medical staff had originally hoped Hilfenhaus would recover in time to make the trip to Adelaide for Friday's game, but have now advised him to rest ahead of the third and final Test in Perth.
Hilfenhaus claimed the Man-of-the-Match honours at the Gabba last week with match figures of 5 for 70. He took the first three West Indian wickets to fall in the second innings in Brisbane, and received praise from his captain, Ricky Ponting, for his evolution from a swing specialist to an all-conditions bowler.
"Ben has had a widely-reported knee tendon injury that was sore during the recent ODI series in India and the first Test at the Gabba," Alex Kountouris, the Australian team physiotherapist, said. "The demands of Test cricket and the subsequent increased workload have made it harder to manage Ben's injury, so it's been decided that the best course of action is for him to miss the Adelaide Test. He will undergo an intense period of rehabilitation over the next two weeks with a view to him being available for selection for the third Test in Perth."
McKay was called into the Australian ODI squad on the recent tour of India, claiming three wickets at 34.33 from two matches. His elevation into the Test squad serves as a further blow to the Test hopes of Stuart Clark who, despite playing a leading role in Australia's Ashes triumph at Headingley in August, has now been overlooked for the first two Tests of the summer.
Hilfenhaus' withdrawal will likely pave the way for Doug Bollinger to play his first Test since debuting against South Africa at the SCG in January. He claimed eight wickets in New South Wales' crushing Sheffield Shield defeat of Western Australia over the past week, and troubled India's batsmen during Australia's recent ODI series.
"The injury to Ben is very disappointing following his outstanding Ashes and his Man-of-the-Match performance in Brisbane, but hopefully with treatment he will be fit to be considered for selection for the third Test in Perth," Andrew Hilditch, Australia's chairman of selectors, said.
"Clint impressed all with his performances in India with the one-day squad and with his bowling for Victoria in the Sheffield Shield this year. We also feel his style of bowling will be well-suited to the conditions in Adelaide should he be selected in the starting XI."
Australia squad Simon Katich, Shane Watson, Ricky Ponting (capt), Michael Hussey, Michael Clarke, Marcus North, Brad Haddin (wk), Mitchell Johnson, Nathan Hauritz, Peter Siddle, Doug Bollinger, Clint McKay.