I will be fit for opening Test, says Clarke

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Recovering from a hamstring problem, Michael Clarke remains a doubtful starter for the second warmup game but the Australian skipper is confident that he will be fit for the opening Test against India beginning in Chennai on February 22.

Never to have missed a Test through injury in his 89-Test career, Clarke said he has enough time to recover from the injury and wants to play in the three-day warm-up match but will go by what his physio Alex Kountouris decides.

“I m feeling much better. I’ve had four days now of recovery, rehab and a lot of physio. I’m certainly on the mend and I’ve got some time when I arrive in India to get myself 100 per cent fit as well,” Clarke told reporters here before leaving for India.

“Like all the boys, the more preparation we can get in Indian conditions the better. I’d really like to play that three-dayer but again, I’ll be advised by Alex (Kountouris) the physio once I land in India but at this stage my plan is to play that three-dayer.

“Look, there is so much time I don’t think there is any doubt I’ll be fit for the first Test. I’ll need to communicate with Alex to see what is the best preparation leading up to that Test,” he added.

Clarke, who missed the final ODI against the West Indies last Sunday due to a recurring hamstring strain, said he wants to spend some time to acclimatise with the Indian conditions.

“In my mind cricket-wise I feel like I need that game to spend some time in Indian conditions both batting and bowling, but also with my captaincy as well because India is such a different place to Australia. “But I’ll listen to the expert and see what he has to say.”

England notched up its first Test series victory in India in 28 years last year with the help of two spinners Graeme Swann and Monty Panesar but Clarke was unsure whether Australia would follow the same tactics.

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