Fast bowler ready for Twenty20 opportunities

Hilfenhaus primed after Academy spell

Cricinfo staff

August 21, 2007

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Ben Hilfenhaus hopes Ricky Ponting calls on him in South Africa © Getty Images
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Ben Hilfenhaus says an off-season refresher with Troy Cooley has helped him refine his action as he aims to extend his explosive form to the international stage in South Africa. Hilfenhaus was a late replacement for Shaun Tait in Australia's 15-man squad for the Twenty20 World Championship next month in what will be his first tour with the national side.

Tait's slow recovery from an elbow injury has left the door open for Hilfenhaus to resume his brief international career that began in January. The ICC's technical committee approved Hilfenhaus' inclusion in the squad on Wednesday.

Despite his outstanding 60-wicket haul in the Pura Cup last season, Hilfenhaus wanted to keep improving and has tweaked his technique with Cooley at the Centre of Excellence. "I spent most of last year at the Centre of Excellence with him and went up for a couple of weeks just recently and spent some time working on some technical things," Hilfenhaus told AAP. "He's been getting me to make little changes in the action for variety - he's fantastic on that perspective."

The opportunities for Hilfenhaus in South Africa will probably be limited as Australia have also chosen Brett Lee, Nathan Bracken, Stuart Clark, Mitchell Johnson and Shane Watson. However, Hilfenhaus is desperate to prove his value and he will draw on his experience in South Africa with the touring Academy side last August.

"You've got to give the selectors a reason to keep you," Hilfenhaus said. "It is just about doing the best you can and putting performances on the board." Hilfenhaus impressed in his Twenty20 international debut against England when he claimed 2 for 16 from four overs.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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