Lee may still make Cup final - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Lee may still make Cup final

By Jim Morton 15/03/2005 08:30:56 PM Comments (0)

The door has opened for Brett Lee to swap drinks carrying for a rushed flight home and an instant return to action in the Pura Cup final.

Australian coach John Buchanan hinted Lee could play for NSW against Queensland in Brisbane if made 12th man again for the second trans-Tasman Test, starting Friday.

The Wellington Test starts two-and-a-half hours earlier than the Pura Cup final and Buchanan said considerations would be given to flying Lee or Queenslander Michael Kasprowicz home if either missed selection.

The coach indicated the unprecedented move would only occur after the Test match started and hinged on a request by the player's state.

It then needed to have the blessing of the player, national selectors, captain Ricky Ponting, Buchanan and Cricket Australia.

But even if all are in agreement, hurdles still remain with the availability of flights, potentially restrictive playing conditions and state selection concerns.

The biggest roadblock is the dearth of direct flights and available seats which means Lee may not arrive until late on the first day at the earliest which would rule him out until day two under Pura Cup playing conditions.

But the move still appears more likely to happen now than when first mooted as Buchanan's comments came amid some behind-the-scenes efforts to ensure plans are in place on match eve.

"In our planning at this stage ... we want Brett and (fellow reserve) Brad (Hodge) to be ready to play the second Test, get the team selected and get the game started, and then let's have a look at it after that," he said.

"Queensland and NSW have to make those decisions first of all but our first consideration is the Test match obviously and having the players ready."

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