Melbourne: Shaun Marsh, who was virtually ruled out of the first Test against India starting from December 26 here, has re-emerged as a contender for the opening game and is all set to join his Australia teammates for a batting camp here on Tuesday.
Marsh was thought to be out of team's scheme of things for the first Test after he withdrew from Cricket Australia Chairman's XI's ongoing three-day warm-up match against India due to a back injury.
Even CA general manager of performance Pat Howard had declared Marsh "unlikely at this stage". But Marsh has been working extremely hard to get fit on time.
And, he also claimed that he would be available for selection.
Marsh scored 141 on debut in Sri Lanka, backed it up with an 81 and 18 in Colombo, then scored 44 and a duck, which came as a number 10 after he had already suffered a back injury in Cape Town.
The news that Marsh is likely to be fit for the first Test will place renewed pressure on Usman Khawaja to score runs in the Chairman's XI game in Canberra.
Even Ryan Harris has declared himself fit for the opener at the MCG.
"I'm pretty good," said Harris, who bowled impressively in a Twenty20 Big Bash League on Sunday as selector Andy Bichel watched.
"I'm aiming to play (tonight), hopefully I get through and if everything goes well I should be right for the first Test. I need match conditions to see how it handles it and see if I'm up for the first match," he was quoted as saying by Daily Telegraph.
With Shane Watson is unlikely to bowl even if he is cleared of hamstring and calf complaints for the first Test, there are fears that Australia could be left with one pacer short against a solid Indian top-order.