Kewell fighting to be fit for World Cup

MELBOURNE - Injury-prone playmaker Harry Kewell is battling to secure a place in Australia's World Cup squad but believes he has overcome the worst of a groin strain that has sidelined him for three months.

The former Liverpool winger, who has not played since December, expects to return for Turkish club Galatasaray this weekend but has only a handful of games in which to prove his fitness before the South Africa finals start on June 11.

"This injury has come at a bad time for me so I've got to work hard to try to secure myself," Kewell, who underwent surgery on the groin earlier this year, told Australian television on Tuesday.

"Basically I've got one of the biggest tournaments coming up now. It's a chance for me to show this club what I'm capable of doing.

"I feel like I can do that. I just needed a little rest to get my body back into shape and now it's back into shape and it's nearly there, so I'm really looking forward to this World Cup."

A fully fit Kewell would be a major boost for the Socceroos, who despite enjoying a smooth qualifying campaign, have struggled to score in the absence of key striker Mark Viduka, who has all but retired from professional football.

The 31-year-old Kewell said he still believed his best football was ahead of him.

"Obviously as a youngster I did well enough to achieve certain things, but I still feel like I've got more in me to produce better football now than what I did when I was younger," he said.

"So hopefully the good achievements haven't even started with me yet."

Australia play their opening Group D match against Germany in Durban on June 13. Serbia and Ghana are the other teams in the group.

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