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Injured trio confident of World Cup action

Cricket

Rod Marsh included three injured players in Australia’s Twenty20 World Cup squad but is confident they’ll all be fit and firing this month.

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James Faulkner, Nathan Coulter-Nile and Aaron Finch would all fancy their chances of being in the XI on March 18, when Australia’s World Cup campaign starts in India.

However, they risk not being part of the 15-man touring party should there be any setbacks in the next three weeks.

“I’m confident that they’ll all get up. I’ve spoken to them all and they’re all very confident with where they’re all at,” chairman of selectors Marsh said.

“If one of them or all of them don’t get up then we’ve got contingency plans.”

Australia depart for a three-match T20 tour of South Africa on February 28.

Marsh didn’t make a deadline for the trio to prove their fitness but it’s likely he’d want the T20 squad to be settled for that tune-up series against the Proteas.

Shaun Marsh is expected to be on standby for former T20 skipper Finch, who tweaked his hamstring during a match at the MCG on January 29.

However, Finch is already running and shaping up well to make the trip.

A number of pacemen would be in the mix to step up should Coulter-Nile or Faulkner also fail in their bid to play the tournament.

Faulkner strained his hamstring in the New Zealand tour opener last Wednesday but it was a minor issue and he is also expected to be passed fit.

“Aaron, Nathan and James are all very important players and we want them to be a part of this World T20 campaign,” Marsh said.

“We are hopeful that they will be able to take part in some form of competitive cricket before leaving for South Africa.”

Coulter-Nile injured his shoulder on December 21 when a baggy green beckoned.

The 28-year-old has started bowling in the nets.

“He’s bowled at least twice … he believes he’ll bowl in club cricket and then hopefully in a Shield game. So he’s coming along nicely,” Marsh said.

Marsh admitted the injuries, plus the fact Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins were unavailable, made his panel’s job tougher than it could have been.

“It would have been made a fair bit easier, I’d suggest, if we didn’t have as many injuries,” Marsh said.

“There’s always robust discussion which is the way it should be.”

-AAP

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