Melbourne: Australia are hopeful that their best batsman from the first innings, Ed Cowan, will be fit on the third day in Melbourne after he spent much of the second day in the rooms receiving treatment for a sore back. The debutant Cowan, who made 68 on Boxing Day, was on and off the field on Tuesday. His place was taken by the substitute Daniel Christian while the physio Alex Kountouris worked on Cowan.
Cowan batted for nearly three hours in his first Test innings but that wasn't the cause of his problem, according to Brad Haddin, the vice-captain. Haddin said Cowan had been a little over-enthusiastic in his warm-ups on the second morning.
"Ed got a bit excited in the warm-up in his first Test, he was diving around too much," Haddin said. "He twinged his back. Alex worked on him through the day and he came back all right."