February 24, 2003

Mallett tells Hauritz to change his ways

Steve Connolly

BRISBANE, Feb 24 AAP - Nathan Hauritz is heading for the cricket World Cup with a message from former Australian off-spin great Ashley Mallett to change the way he bowls.

Hauritz was named today as the replacement for the Shane Warne and flies out to South Africa tomorrow.

The 21-year-old off-spinner received some timely tuition at the Gabba today from Mallett, who claimed 132 wickets in 38 Tests at 29.84 and is now helping Rod Marsh at the English Cricket Academy in Adelaide.

Mallett worked on Hauritz's action which the young spinner believed had changed during Australia's series against Pakistan in Sharjah last year.

"He tends to bowl around himself a bit, especially in the one day game," said Mallett, who has advised Hauritz since he was a 16-year-old.

"He says he actually bowls differently in one day cricket.

"We tend to differ there in our thinking, then again he's 21 years of age he's only just getting to know himself. By the time he's 25 or 26 he's going to be a hell of a lot better. But that process of getting to know himself is going to take a while.

"He's got to change his thinking. His mindset's gotta change.

"He's got to realise he's good enough to defend and attack in the one package. He'll get there but he'll work it out himself."

Within hours of Warne's 12 month suspension from the game on Saturday, Hauritz received a phone call from Australian chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns telling him to pack his bags for South Africa and the World Cup.

Hauritz was told to keep the news to himself until Australian Cricket Board chief executive James Sutherland returned to South Africa following Warne's drugs case and the International Cricket Council was advised of the replacement decision.

"He sort of did say it's got to be kept confidential for a few days," Hauritz said at the Gabba today after the decision was finally announced.

Hauritz didn't keep the news entirely to himself. He told his housemate and girlfriend but couldn't contact his parents in Hervey Bay, who were only told of his secret yesterday.

He will be with an Australian team in South Africa for the second successive year.

His only regret is that for the second year in a row he looks like missing out on playing for Queensland in a Pura Cup final.

"That was probably one of the first things I thought about when I find out I was going over," he said.

"Last year I missed out on the Pura Cup final as well and I still haven't been part of one. You take the good and the bad when these things come along."

Hauritz said he sympathised with his hero Warne.

"I still haven't come to terms with what's going on," he said.

"If I'm asked to play I'm sure I'll be ready and hopefully the opportunity will come along."