Clarke cleared of injury to play for Aussies in Ashes warm-up
THE under-fire Australian team received a boost ahead of the first of two Ashes warm-up matches, with captain Michael Clarke given the all-clear to return from a back injury.
Following a winless Champions Trophy campaign, Clarke is set to play for the Baggy Greens against Somerset in Taunton next week.
"We'd love to have him back - he's our best player, our most experienced player and our captain," top order batsman Phil Hughes said.
The out-of-form duo of Hughes and wicket-keeper batsman Matthew Wade will play for Australia A against Gloucestershire on Friday to maximise their preparations for the Ashes.
Meanwhile selectors yesterday named leg spinner Fawad Ahmed in a 15-man Australia A squad to tour Zimbabwe and South Africa during July and August.
The team, to be captained by NSW all-rounder Steve Smith, includes youngsters Ashton Agar, Chadd Sayers and Gurinder Sandhu.
Tasmanian gloveman Tim Paine will be the keeper.
The team will play a mix of three and four-day games, as well as a one-day triangular series against South Africa A and India A in Pretoria.