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Michael Clarke had fractured shoulder against South Africa in 3rd Test

Australian captain  Michael Clarke was © Getty Images
Michael Clarke (above) was hit on the shoulder by Morne Morkel in the final Test of the series against South Africa at Cape Town © Getty Images

Sydney: Mar 17, 2014

Australia captain Michael Clarke‘s courageous century in the decisive Third Test against South Africa took on added significance on Monday when it was revealed he played with a fractured shoulder.

Clarke weathered a fearsome barrage of bouncers on the first day of the Cape Town Test this month, being hit on the forearm, elbow, shoulder and helmet in a fiery spell of short-pitched bowling by Morne Morkel.

He went on to a make a pivotal 161 not out, hailed by many as the best knock of his career, to help his team deliver a 2-1 series victory.

The results of scans released on Monday showed he played with a fractured left shoulder that has ruled him out of the domestic Sheffield Shield final this weekend, where he had hoped to play for New South Wales against Western Australia.

“Michael Clarke was injured as a result of being struck on the left shoulder during the third Test against South Africa in Cape Town,” said Australian team physiotherapist Alex Kountouris.

“We have since done a series of scans that have demonstrated a fracture near his shoulder joint.  We expect that this will heal with a period of rest.”

Clarke was, however, cleared of any serious injury to his thumb, which was left bloodied and without the nail after being struck during another Morkel stint.

Despite the battering he took in Cape Town, Clarke had been keen to play for New South Wales (NSW) in the Shield tournament.

“I’ve got a few injuries from that second last innings, so I’ll spend some time recovering and trying to get my body right and hopefully I’ll be able to play in the Shield final for NSW,” Clarke said upon his return from South Africa.

“But I’m in good hands. I’ve got a good physio here in Sydney, and I think I’ll be fine. I’ll just take some time for the body to heal and the mind as well.

“It’s been a busy six months and mentally that’s as challenging as physically, so I’m looking forward to being home with family and friends and enjoying the simple things.”

It was revealed after the Test that the battering Clarke took prevented him from sleeping after day one. He went to stumps that day unbeaten on 92 and returned to complete a stoic innings of 161.

Australia are not due to play another Test series until they travel to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) to face Pakistan in October.

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 30, 2014 (11:30 IST)   at Abu Dhabi

Sri Lanka tour of India, 2014

Nov 2, 2014 (14:30 IST)   at Cuttack

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Nov 3, 2014 (09:00 IST)   at Khulna

South Africa tour of Australia, 2014

Nov 5, 2014 (14:05 IST)   at Adelaide

Sri Lanka tour of India, 2014

Nov 6, 2014 (14:30 IST)   at Ahmedabad

More

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Nov 15, 2014  at Ahmedabad

Match cancelled

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Nov 7, 2014  at Bengaluru

Match cancelled

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 30, 2014  at Hyderabad

Match cancelled

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 27, 2014  at Hamilton

No result

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Oct 25, 2014  at Dhaka

Bangladesh won by 3 wkts

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