Brisbane: Australian coach Tim Nielsen has denied suggestions that vice-captain Michael Clarke was hampered by a back injury during his pained innings in the first Ashes Test at the Gabba.
Clarke lingered at the crease for 76 minutes and 50 balls in making just nine runs before he was dismissed while attempting to play a pull shot.
Nielsen said that Clarke had simply been cornered by excellent England bowling in the first innings.
“I thought they bowled nicely to him. There were a couple of periods where Anderson especially bowled well I thought, just as there were a couple of periods in the first innings where Siddle bowled well, and in the first half of the game the bowlers had the conditions in their favour,” a sports website quoted Nielsen, as saying.
“After that the batsmen came to the fore, and I suppose the momentum was turned by Mike Hussey and Brad Haddin. It was hard work for Michael, but there’s nothing physically wrong with him, and I look forward to him making some runs in Adelaide,” he added.
Clarke has been under a cloud since aggravating his chronic back problem playing for New South Wales earlier this month.