Australia suffered a major setback on Wednesday ahead of their third and crucial final against Sri Lanka as they will miss the services of skipper Michael Clarke and fast bowler James Pattinson in Thursday's match due to injuries.
Australia coach Mickey Arthur said Pattinson has strained a buttock muscle while diving in the field during Australia`s loss to the Sri Lankans in Tuesday`s second final in Adelaide. Clarke's left hamstring injury meant he will miss the third final at Adelaide Oval and the first part of the five-match ODI series against the West Indies in the Caribbean. According to other reports, he may not return until the first Test on April 7 in Barbados.
Pattinson will undergo some scans later in the day and so will skipper Clarke.
The danger of missing the West Indies tour, for which the team will leave on Friday, is looming large on Clarke. Arthur said the extent of Clarke`s hamstring strain remained unknown.
"It doesn`t look great for certainly the early part of the one-day series in the West Indies," Arthur told reporters.
Australia have been grappling with injuries to many key players with opener David Warner and paceman Brett Lee also among the injured list but they continued to play in the series the Zeenews Sports Bureau reported.