Melbourne: Australian chief selector Andrew Hilditch has told injured pacer Brett Lee that he must be back to his best form if he wants to resume his international career.
Hilditch defended his decision to select Lee for this year’s World Twenty20 saying he does not regret handing the paceman a national contract for this year.
An injury plagued Lee Wednesday flew home from the World Twenty20 in the Caribbean after straining a muscle near his right elbow.
“If he gets back to his best he will be a very potent weapon for us, he’s been a great bowler for Australia,” Hilditch was quoted as saying in The Age. “Really this is now in the hands of how he comes back from this injury.
“He’s got to get this injury treated, he’s got to see what his rehab is like and needs to get back to his best.”
There was much speculation whether Lee would make the top 25 list after his retirement from Test cricket but he was retained to play Twenty20s and one-dayers. Because of his recent injury record, Lee has been out of the one-day international side.
Lee’s returned from the elbow operation to play in the Indian Premier League (IPL), where he broke a thumb and had limited game time.
“We didn’t have much of an opportunity to see the IPL, we would have liked to see more but the reality is you have to pick the squad on March 30 so we only got to see the one IPL game,” Hilditch said.
“I acknowledge that at the time it was a little bit of a gamble, we needed him to play eight or nine IPL games to get ready, which he had in front of him.
“Then he had the thumb injury which impacted his preparation, that was disappointing.”
Lee’s manager Neil Maxwell said Lee planned to force his way back into the 50-over side for the June-July tour of England - where they will also play Pakistan.