Marsh faces first Test fitness race

Australia opener Shaun Marsh is in a race against time and his own body as he attempts to recover from injury ahead of the First Test against South Africa at the WACA.

Marsh suffered a hamstring tear during WA’s Matador Cup victory over Tasmania on Saturday having just returned to action after a fractured finger kept him out of the ODI series in SA.

A release from WA cricket read: “Marsh will return to Perth where he will undergo rehabilitation with a view to being available for selection for the First Test of the Commonwealth Bank Test Series against South Africa at the WACA Ground next month.”

Marsh made a vital 70 runs as WA overcame their Tasmanian rivals by four wickets but was in visible discomfort throughout his innings.

The opener had taken a conservative approach to his previous finger injury with a view to be fit for the Test series.

The left-hander told News Ltd: “I was lucky enough to get another opportunity in Sri Lanka and do well, so hopefully that puts me in good stead leading into the summer.

“I’m hungry to keep being really consistent in Test cricket now, which I probably haven’t been in my career to date.

“But to wait for my opportunity and finally get back in the Test team, and then break a finger, which I’ve never done before … it’s been extremely frustrating.

“I was hoping to go to South Africa, and I was sort of happy to go over there and play with risk.

“We thought the smart decision was to take a few extra weeks and give the finger the full six weeks that it needs to make sure it’s 100 per cent ahead of the summer.”

Marsh scored 130 in Australia’s last Test match in Sri Lanka where he replaced Joe Burns after the latter struggled for form in Asia.

Burns and Usman Khawaja are considered to be favourites to slot into Marsh’s position should he lose his fitness race.