sport

Watson misses trip to Zimbabwe

Shane Watson has withdrawn from Australia's forthcoming tour of Zimbabwe after injuring an ankle in training.

The all-rounder sprained an ankle after stepping on a ball during a training session in Brisbane and will be replaced by Phil Hughes when they travel to southern Africa next Wednesday.

The Aussies are taking part in a triangular one-day series against hosts Zimbabwe and South Africa which starts on August 25.

Team physiotherapist Alex Kountouris said of Watson: "Shane has sprained his right ankle at training, damaging an ankle ligament.

"His ankle is swollen and sore but expected to recover with a period of rest.

"Due to the compact nature of the tour, we've made a decision that Shane would be unlikely to recover sufficiently in time for the series.

"He will return to Sydney in the coming days to continue his recovery and be ready for the tour of the United Arab Emirates."

Regarding his replacement Hughes, chief selector Rod Marsh added: "Phil was unlucky not to be picked in the initial squad after showing some great form in the Australia A series and was the natural choice to come in for Shane.

"The selection panel is very happy with the bowling depth in the squad but Watson's absence has meant another top order batsman is necessary."