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Symonds not in line for SA tour

Last updated on: February 03, 2009 14:34 IST

Troubled all-rounder Andrew Symonds will not be considered for next month's Test series against South Africa after Cricket Australia found him lacking in commitment and declared him "unavailable" for selection until the completion of his counselling and rehabilitation.

"Cricket Australia (CA) has advised its National Selection Panel (NSP) that Andrew Symonds cannot be considered for national selection until he has completed further counselling and rehabilitation," CA said in a statement.

"Symonds will be unavailable for consideration for selection for the South Africa Test tour this month and will need to satisfy formal rehabilitation criteria before again being made available for international selection," it added.

CA CEO James Sutherland said the Board had re-assessed Symonds' progress with his rehabilitation after the all-rounder was fined 4000 dollars for his infamous radio diatribe against New Zealand player Brendon McCullum.

"Our assessment is that he is making good progress but that his commitment needs testing against new, tougher criteria we will finalise after consultation with his counselors, the ACA and Queensland Cricket," he said.

"We have a responsibility to Andrew and his welfare but we also have a responsibility to Australian cricket to ensure his commitment is as it needs to be before he can be considered for national selection," he added.

Sutherland said the decision to leave Symonds out was reached after "feedback from the state, national players and Australian team management".

Sutherland said Symonds has been told of CA's decision. Elaborating on the criteria on which CA will decide on Symonds' level of commitment in future, Sutherland said the progress reports of the tougher rehab would be overseen by the Board every fortnight.

"The counselling program is increased in concentration and treated as a priority above Symonds CA and QC commitments Formal fortnightly rehabilitation progress reports are made to CA," he said.

He said CA would review Symonds' progress at the end of the Sheffield Shield season, which is prior to the selection of its squad for the Australia-Pakistan ODI series to be played from April.

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