Australia’s plans for the Ashes were hit last night by the news that pace bowler Ryan Harris will be out of action for up to two months with an Achilles injury.
The 33-year-old, who is one of only seven players named in the tourists’ squad with Ashes experience, suffered the injury while playing for the Kings XI Punjab in the Indian Premier League.
He played in Kings XI’s first three games of the season but took just one wicket before sustaining the injury.
The former Surrey, Sussex and Yorkshire bowler has a history of injuries and missed the recent tour to South Africa after undergoing shoulder surgery.
In July 2010, he was forced to fly home from the Ashes to undergo corrective knee surgery, while he also missed the one-day series with England in December the same year after breaking his ankle.
Meanwhile, Graham Onions reinforced his claim to a place in the England side by taking five Yorkshire wickets for Durham. With two wickets and a run-out to his name overnight, Onions dismissed England’s Joe Root and Jonny Bairstow and then Gary Ballance in the space of 14 balls to claim the 17th five-wicket haul of his career.