Katich declared fit to play third Test against Pakistan

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Sydney, Jan 12 (ANI): Australian opening batsman Simon Katich has been cleared to play in the third and final Test against Pakistan, starting on Thursday at the Bellerive Oval.

Katich, who missed the second Test victory with a badly bruised forearm, proved his fitness at a lengthy training session in Hobart on Tuesday morning.

NSW batsman Phillip Hughes was on standby for Katich, but has now been released to return home, where he is expected to play for the Blues in Wednesday night's Twenty20 clash against Queensland at ANZ Stadium.

Katich had been confident of overcoming his injury and allayed all concerns by batting without discomfort, The Sydney Morning Herald reports.

"Physio Alex Kountouris just wants me to wait until the morning to see how I pull up but it felt really good. I wasn't hampered at all so it's amazing what a week can do," a confident Katich said after two stints in the nets.

"The pain subsided, the swelling has gone down, and it feels good again. I'll just train again [Tuesday]. Basically Alex just wants to see how I pull up but it feels good now and I'm pretty sure I will be fine," he said.

Spinner Nathan Hauritz, meantime, has been diagnosed with a cracked thumb sustained when he clutched a crucial caught-and bowled-chance to his chest on the captivating final day in Sydney.

A team spokesman said the spinner was in no danger of missing the final Test of the summer. (ANI)

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