SHANE Watson burst into tears after suffering the hamstring injury he has described as the darkest moment of his career.
The all rounder is refusing to let go of his slim chance of recovering for this week's first Test at the Gabba but concedes he is "hoping against hope".
The Queenslander cried in the WACA dressing room after limping off the ground with the latest in a string of injuries that have robbed him of his chance to shine at international level.
"It was devastating, the worst moment of my career by far. I can hardly bring myself to talk about it," Watson said.
"There were tears. Gilly and all the WA boys came into the dressing room to talk to me - they've been great and there is a lot of kind hearts in cricket.
"It's very hard to take because I felt like I had really earned my Test place with my performances over the last few months."
Batsman Michael Clarke was added to Australia's first Test squad in the likelihood that Watson will be ruled out. The new tattoo on Clarke's left arm - Carpe Diem (Seize the Day) - is likely to get its first major test.
Watson flew back to Brisbane last night and will today consult Australia physiotherapist Alex Kountouri for an assessment on the hamstring strain.
Initial scans showed the injury was enough to keep Watson out for one or two weeks, meaning Australia is unlikely to risk him in the Ashes opener.
The first two days of his rehabilitation have been dedicated to making the injury settle down.
"They've got to stop the bleeding before we do anything else," Watson said. "I knew I was in trouble when I felt the hamstring twinge. It's hard to come to terms with because I have gone through so much with injuries in the past few years and I thought all that was behind me.
"I'm not going to rule myself out of the Test, I'm going to do everything possible to get right. I am hoping against hope."
A back injury ruled Watson out of the 2003 World Cup and he was then sidelined for the international summer last season when he popped his shoulder in the field.
He also strained his calf muscle while scoring an unbeaten 201 in last season's Pura Cup final.