Aamer's injury sets Pak back

Cricket: Second Test: Ponting puts team on guard

Aamer's injury sets Pak back

Mohammad Aamer

A team official said it had been decided that Aamer would not be picked for the second Test in a bid to save him from a possible injury.

Aamer had serious stiffness around his hamstring muscles after the first Test in Melbourne. The 17-year-old picked up five wickets in the second innings in a match Pakistan lost by 170 runs.  With Aamer out, both pacers Umar Gul and Mohammad Sami will be returning to the line-up for the SCG Test.

Leg-spinner Danish Kaneria will also be back in the side after missing the Melbourne Test because of an injured finger.

Pakistan will be hoping for Kaneria to strike form on the SCG track that has traditionally supported spinners.

Katich doubtful

Australia, meanwhile, brought in opening batsman Phillip Hughes as cover for the injured Simon Katich. “Hughes is flying from Melbourne to Sydney today to join up with the Australian squad,” a Cricket Australia release said. Australian physiotherapist Alex Kountouris said Katich was recovering but still had difficulty in batting.

“Simon Katich sustained a similar injury to Ricky Ponting when he was struck on the right elbow during the second innings of the first Test,” he said.

Meanwhile, Australian captain Ponting warned his side against underestimating the unpredictable Pakistanis.

“Teams are probably at their most dangerous when they’ve come off a heavy loss like last week,” Ponting said of Pakistan’s 170-run loss at the MCG. “The challenge for us is to not get carried away with what we’ve done.”

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