Lehmann likely to miss tour opener

Published: Tuesday, September 28, 2004, 23:53 [IST]
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Mumbai,:Darren Lehmann would be arriving here only on the morning of the Australian cricket team's tour opener against Ranji Trophy champions Mumbai and is very likely to sit out of the match.

"Lehmann's flight out of Melbourne was delayed because of fog and he is now expected to arrive here on Thursday morning," Cricket Australia Media Manager Jonathan Rose, told PTI today.

Asked whether the fact that he would be arriving only on the morning of the tour opener meant Lehmann would be forced to sit out, Rose said "it is unlikely he would play".

Lehmann, who had gone home from England for personal reasons, is a vital member of the squad with his ability to play spin bowling very well. The left-handed middle order batsman also provides variety to the bowling attack with his left arm orthodox slow bowling.

Lehmann, who was a huge success on the Australians' successful visit to Sri Lanka recently by garnering 375 runs in five innings -- including two centuries and one half century -- has played one Test earlier on Indian soil, at Bangalore during the 1997-98 visit.

That Test was won by the visitors to narrow the margin of defeat in the series. The opening Test of the current rubber is also scheduled in the southern metropolis from October 6.

Meanwhile, the visitors had their second work-out -- a slightly extended session than yesterday - this morning at the Brabourne Stadium. They are set to have a full practice and conditioning session tomorrow morning.


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