Australia have suffered a third injury blow ahead of the second Test against South Africa after seamer Peter Siddle was ruled out of the Hobart match with a lower back problem.
Siddle, 31, had scans on his back after the 177-run defeat in Perth, which revealed the back problem that has kept him out for most of 2016 had flared up again.
“Whilst we expect bowlers to be sore after Test matches, this was slightly worse than we expected and given that he was returning from a significant back injury, we organised some scans today,” Australia physiotherapist David Beakley said.
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“The scans demonstrated some low grade bone oedema around his old stress fracture that is likely to be a flare-up of his previous lower back injury.
“We are hopeful that this will resolve relatively quickly but have withdrawn him from the squad for the second Test match in Hobart.
“We will monitor his recovery and have a better idea of when he will return to play in the next week or so.”
Siddle’s injury comes after opener Shaun Marsh was ruled out of the second Test with a broken finger, while Adam Voges is a doubt with a hamstring strain.
Joe Burns and Callum Ferguson have been called up to the squad while Jackson Bird has been named on standby for Siddle.
Siddle’s injury has opened the door for Joe Mennie to be handed his Test debut after he was the player left out in Perth.
Australia coach Darren Lehmann warned his wounded squad "every spot is under pressure" after poor batting and a string of dropped catches in Perth consigned Australia to a fourth successive Test defeat.
Depending on the Hobart conditions, spinner Nathan Lyon could be a casualty after he failed to take a wicket in South Africa’s second innings at a cost of 146 runs.
“I would say every spot is under pressure,” said Lehmann, who is aware that the last time Australia lost four in a row, then coach Mickey Arthur was dismissed. “That’s the nature of the beast if you don’t have success.”
The second Test starts in Hobart on Saturday.
• First Test, South Africa won by 177 runs, Perth
• Second Test, Saturday to November 16, Hobart
• Third Test, November 24-28, Adelaide
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