Australia star Fyfe misses out

Australia were dealt a major blow yesterday when their leading player Nathan Fyfe was ruled out of Saturday’s test.

The Fremantle player damaged his shoulder attempting to claim a mark in the closing stages of his side’s comfortable warm-up victory over a Sydney GAA selection in Greater Western Sydney Giants’ home. The win was marred by the injury to the 23-year-old who, but for suspension, would likely have won the coveted Brownlow Medal this season. He was also honoured as the 2014 AFLPA Most Valuable Player.

Controversy continues to rage about the inclusion of Essendon pair Dustin Fletcher and Jobe Watson in the Australia squad. The pair could yet face doping charges as a result of the club’s 2012 supplements programme.

A number of sports media commentators in Australia have criticised the decision to afford the duo an exemption to play, while it has also sparked much anger among Australian Rules supporters on social media.

Meanwhile, Ireland’s concerns centre around Roscommon’s Cathal Cregg, who strained a hamstring and couldn’t train in Melbourne before flying to Perth yesterday. Darren Hughes looks to have recovered from a knock sustained in Saturday’s warm-up game. Saturday’s game in Patersons Stadium is heading towards a sell-out, with more than 35,000 tickets sold.

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