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Last Updated:  Wednesday, 5 March, 2003, 11:20 GMT
Gillespie loses fitness battle
Jason Gillespie
Gillespie took eight wickets in four games
Jason Gillespie has failed to shake off a tendon injury in time for the Cricket World Cup's Super Six phase.

The Australian fast bowler confirmed his withdrawal from the tournament on Wednesday.

"I'm shattered and disappointed but these things happen," he told a news conference.

"It's very disappointing, but I'll be okay."

New South Wales left-armer Nathan Bracken, who has played 11 one-day internationals, has been called up as his replacement.

Gillespie had a scan on his injured right heel on Tuesday after missing Australia's last two group games.

It showed that the 27-year-old has strained the tendon that runs alongside the Achilles tendon.

"I'm relieved it's not my Achilles," he said. "That could have been a lot more dangerous.

"Injuries are just part and parcel of being a fast bowler, and I've had my fair share.

Gillespie added he hopes to be bowling again in about four weeks and be available for Australia's West Indies tour.

Injury problems

The South Australia paceman had taken eight wickets in four group games, but sat out last weekend's thrilling win over England.

He was not missed, however, as replacement Andy Bichel took 7-20, the second best figures in World Cup history.

He also made a vital unbeaten 34 as Australia reached their target with two balls to spare.

Gillespie has suffered a series of injury problems during his career.

He missed the last World Cup because of a back problem and the following year suffered a broken leg when he collided with captain Steve Waugh while fielding in a Test match in Sri Lanka.

The world champions play Sri Lanka in the first match of the Super Six stage on Friday.

Have Your Say on Australia
04 Jan 03 |  Have Your Say

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