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Mitchell Starc faces race against time to be fit for Australia's Test series against India

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Mitchell Starc faces race against time to be fit for Australia's Test series against India

Mitchell Starc will face a race against time to be fit for Australia’s blockbuster Test series against India in February as the fast bowler revealed the extent of his gruesome finger injury: ‘The tendon is gone’

  • Mitchell Starc dislocated his finger while trying to catch on the first day
  • He bowled 18 overs in South Africa’s second innings despite a bleeding finger
  • Starc dismissed Sarel Erwee as Australia beat the Proteas at the MCG
  • But the quick now faces six weeks to repair his damaged tendon
  • Australia’s four-Test series with India begins in Nagpur on February 9
  • Click here for all your latest international sports news on Daily Mail Australia

Mitchell Starc could miss at least part of Australia’s Test series in India in February after revealing the tendon in his injured finger is ‘gone’.

The Aussie quickly suffered a tendon injury after dislocating the tip of his middle finger on his left hand – his bowling hand – while attempting a long catch in the second session on day one of the Boxing Day Test at the MCG.

Starc bowled 18 overs in South Africa’s second innings, removing opener Sarel Erwee as Australia took an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series after beating the Proteas by an innings and 182 runs.

The 32-year-old will miss the third Test of the series against South Africa and the injury has put his presence in the blockbuster series in India at risk as he is unable to straighten his injured digit.

‘From the scans the other day, the tendon is basically gone from the top of the finger, so I can’t straighten it or any of that,’ he told the Australian Associated Press.

The initial prognosis for Starc is to be out for six weeks, during which he will be unable to bowl as he will have to wear a splint due to his injury.

That will leave him facing an almost impossible race against the clock to be fit for the opening Test in Nagpur on February 9.

He suffered a tendon injury after dislocating the tip of his middle finger on his left hand

He suffered a tendon injury after dislocating the tip of his middle finger on his left hand

The Aussie quick's whites were stained with blood from his injured middle finger

The Aussie quick’s whites were stained with blood from his injured middle finger

Starc bowled 18 overs in South Africa's second innings and removed opener Sarel Erwee

Starc bowled 18 overs in South Africa’s second innings and removed opener Sarel Erwee

The second leg of the four-Test series is set to begin on February 17 in Delhi, with the third Test in Dharamsala starting on March 1 before the final Test in Ahmedabad eight days later.

And Starc, who earlier this month became only the seventh Australian bowler to take 300 Test wickets, said he hoped he could feature at some point as Australia chase a first series win over India in 18 years.

The champion fast bowler will undergo further scans in Sydney next week and then see a specialist to plan his recovery.

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‘India is coming up, so we’ll see what deadlines are worked out after we have those discussions next week,’ he explained.

New South Wales quick Josh Hazlewood is expected to replace Starc at the SCG this week

New South Wales quick Josh Hazlewood is expected to replace Starc at the SCG this week

‘Hopefully, it will fit somewhere in the front end of the tour.

‘Despite the finger being out of action, I can still train to some degree and bowl in creative ways to keep my bowling workloads in order without affecting the finger. That part will be fine, where the Indian tendon timeframe comes into play.’

Fellow New South Wales quick Josh Hazlewood is expected to replace Starc for the New Year’s Day Test at the SCG after declaring himself fit following a side-strain injury that ruled him out of contention at the MCG.

Meanwhile, injured all-rounder Cameron Green was also ruled out of the Sydney Test as he suffered a broken finger after being hit in the glove by a 144kph delivery from Anrich Nortje late on the second day.

Cameron Green also suffered a broken finger after his retirement hurt in the ninth as he was hit by a delivery from Anrich Nortje

Cameron Green retired hurt in the ninth after being hit by a delivery from Anrich Nortje

But he returned to finish unbeaten on 51 on the third day despite batting with a broken finger

But he returned to finish unbeaten on 51 on the third day despite batting with a broken finger

Greeneen, who became the most expensive Australian in IPL history after being snapped up by the Mumbai Indians for $3.15million last week, retired with an injury on nine but returned to bat on the third day and finished unbeaten with a brave 51.

The 23-year-old did not take the field in South Africa’s second innings and will be rested ahead of the India tour.

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‘Greeny is pretty close to being irreplaceable as a top-order batter who gives you another bowling option,’ said Aussie captain Pat Cummins.

We’ll chat through all those combinations when we get a little closer [to the SCG Test] but we are not fine with anything.’