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Hazlewood soreness thins Ashes pace ranks

Daniel Brettig

November 8, 2013

Comments: 30 | Text size: A | A

Josh Hazlewood geared up for a training session, Headingley, September 5, 2013
Josh Hazlewood is suffering from shin soreness © Getty Images
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Australia's fast-bowling stocks for the Ashes have thinned still further after it was revealed Josh Hazlewood is suffering from shin soreness and will be out of action for up to a month while he recovers. Hazlewood had been set aside by Cricket Australia as one of eight fast bowlers to be prepared for the Ashes, and was believed to be in line for consideration around the time of the second match of the series in Adelaide.

However Hazlewood's likely absence for a month will rule him out of action until mid-December, forcing CA's team performance manager Pat Howard and the selectors to look elsewhere for their eighth fast man. Others in the group are believed to include Ryan Harris, Peter Siddle, Mitchell Johnson, Ben Cutting, Ben Hilfenhaus, Nathan Coulter-Nile and Clint McKay. Chadd Sayers and the discarded Doug Bollinger are two pacemen who will now be under closer consideration.

"New South Wales Blues paceman Josh Hazlewood will miss grade cricket tomorrow due to shin soreness," a Cricket New South Wales spokesman said. "The management plan for Josh was for him to miss the second round of Sheffield Shield cricket, play grade cricket tomorrow [Saturday] before returning for round three of the Shield. Josh had some shin soreness during the first Sheffield Shield game that has not resolved, as such he will not play in the grade cricket match on the weekend and is likely to miss the next few weeks until he has fully recovered."

Hazlewood had been the subject of controversy earlier this week when he was removed from the New South Wales Sheffield Shield side for their match against Victoria as part of a pre-arranged CA management plan. This raised the objection of the state bowling coach Geoff Lawson, who thought Hazlewood needed to bowl after a poor display against Tasmania in the opening round.

A compromise was therefore reached in which Hazlewood turned out for his Sydney grade side over the weekend before returning to the Blues' Shield team for their match against Queensland in Brisbane a week before the first Test. However he has now joined James Pattinson, Mitchell Starc and Jackson Bird among the list of quick bowlers unavailable as the Ashes series looms.

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

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Posted by Big_Maxy_Walker on (November 9, 2013, 13:49 GMT)

The selectors have already basically let known it will be Siddle, Harris and Johnson in the first test. But should one of them get injured, dropped etc Ben Cutting should go straight in. Troubled nearly all the English batsmen and was very unlucky in the A game, has just missed out on test selection before due to injury on the eve of a test, is an excellent fielder and big hitter with the bat(much more consistent than Johnson), and has good accuracy and a surprising bouncer.

Posted by Big_Maxy_Walker on (November 9, 2013, 13:44 GMT)

He shouldn't have been picked anyway. If he didn't play for NSW he would be way down on the list. Hasn't got close to any consistency and hasn't even taken 5 wickets in an innings in the shield

Posted by Macker60 on (November 9, 2013, 10:50 GMT)

I think you need to go back and check your history, Australia rarely goes into a Test match with there First chose Bowlers there has always been someone injured. Here a few, that have missed large Chunks of Cricket, Lillee, Thompson, Gillespie , Reid, Alderman, MacDemont, Plus there have been quite a few Leading Shield bowlers that broke down and never got a Shot.

Posted by DickCam on (November 9, 2013, 1:47 GMT)

Our bowlers never had these issues when Dennis Lillee was bowling coach. In '04 CA cut him lose in order to save $$$. We are seeing the fruits of that unwise decision, and now we have a former rugby player managing our cricketers fitness. Surely James Sutherland has done enough damage to Aussie cricket, please James quit now!

Posted by   on (November 8, 2013, 23:28 GMT)

Feeling bad for Cummins. He is an exceptional talent. Conside him CA

Posted by Bonehead_maz on (November 8, 2013, 20:28 GMT)

@ Joseph Langford ROFL yep ! ....... but hold on there are 45 of us and that's a budget increase of ........ All our systems are in place to prove it wasn't our fault ......we leave no stone unturned........ they should take over a quality system consultancy firm as a sideline ....... too funny. With Hazlewood though, I think he somehow needs to get back off his toe on the front crease..... can't see it ever not causing ankle, calf, shin problems ?

Posted by   on (November 8, 2013, 20:24 GMT)

Author has overlooked Pat Cummins. The guy is still only 20

Posted by   on (November 8, 2013, 19:51 GMT)

What is the CA Training Team doing to our pace bowlers and when are they going to wake up to themselves to relies that what they are doing is detrimental to the health of these young men?? How many more pace bowlers have to be injured before their destructive techniques and methods are thrown out?!?!?

Posted by Bonehead_maz on (November 8, 2013, 18:03 GMT)

Hazlewood has an unusual landing action that surely must lead to injuries in his front leg ?

Posted by   on (November 8, 2013, 16:09 GMT)

Where is Alister McDermott? He was a decent prospect.

Posted by SDHM on (November 8, 2013, 14:07 GMT)

Haven't seen him so I can't comment, but it seems odd he's being considered looking at his stats. Was impressed with Ben Cutting in the Aus A game, even though England ended up racking up 318-0. Thought he looked sharp, batting is supposedly useful too.

Posted by izzidole on (November 8, 2013, 13:13 GMT)

With our young fast bowlers breaking down everytime it's a good opportumity for Bollinger and Hilfenhaus to step up and seal their place in the test team alongside Siddle, Harris and Johnson. We also have some promising young pacemen like Sayers, Sandhu and Abbott in the wings. Unlike other test playing countries our young fastmen are prone to injury and are not available to play most of the time between the ages of 19 to 24 according to our so called sports scientists. If we don't fix this problem sooner than later we could lose the ashes for the fourth consecutive time.

Posted by azzaman333 on (November 8, 2013, 12:48 GMT)

No great loss. He'd be lucky to make the top 10 bowlers in the country, let alone the top 3 or 4. He's also one of the laziest people in the field you're ever likely to see, not the sort of attitude you want from a supposed test prospect.

Posted by Beertjie on (November 8, 2013, 12:05 GMT)

Hope that one of Hazlewood, Pattinson and Jackson Bird are available for the WACA. Would prefer someone other than Hazlewood but he might get a show if someone (MJ?) loses form or gets injured. Give Coulter-Nile a game.

Posted by KeeperWithABat on (November 8, 2013, 12:04 GMT)

I think we are in a very tight spot with our bowlers. We can't afford another injury or else we will be bowling a very poor and inexperienced pace attack. At the moment, siddle, Harris and Johnson would be my picks. I just hope none of them get injured.

Posted by Harmony111 on (November 8, 2013, 12:03 GMT)

This talk of the rebuilding the Aussie team has been going on since 2007-08 when Hayden, Gilchrist, McGrath, Gillespie retired & Brett Lee lost his sting. Ever since that time, Aussies have not been able to find ONE replacement for any of these & in the meanwhile they have lost Ponting & Hussey too that has weakened them even more.

But just how much time does a team need to get rebuilt? Teams need 6 months or12 months or 18 months to find replacements, not perennially. The Aussies are in such a bad shape these days that Hazelwood & Bird are being mentioned as part of their FIRST CHOICE Bowling line up.

Not only have Aussies been unable to find new greats, they can't even find new talent. In fact they can't even find new players who are fit to last a series.

Posted by   on (November 8, 2013, 11:28 GMT)

with the bowling stocks wafer thin, the possible option would be Ryan Harris, Mithchell jhonson, coulternile

Posted by drfarnsworth on (November 8, 2013, 10:54 GMT)

What's so good about Hazlewood anyway (apart from being fron NSW)? 21 first class matches and no 5-for, only two 4-fors! There are too many young fast bowlers that get over-hyped and over-injured. I'll join "Not_Another_Keybored_Expert" in the ranks.

Posted by sifter132 on (November 8, 2013, 10:44 GMT)

Have to laugh at all the talking heads and 'experts' who were whining about Hazlewood not playing this weekend for either Aus A or NSW. What do you know, there was something wrong with him...Slightly more concerning though was that one of the experts was Geoff Lawson, the NSW bowling coach. You'd think he would know that Hazlewood had a fitness cloud and why Cricket Australia might want him rested. Yet he had no problem voicing his discontent. Methinks CA might be meddling a bit too much in state cricket for the liking of state cricket officials.

Posted by Harmony111 on (November 8, 2013, 10:40 GMT)


You got 5/6 first choice bowlers? We saw how your first choice bowlers were whipped black & blue by India in the 4-0 white wash we handed to you just a few months back, you remember that? Patto & Siddle & Starc were all there FYI.

The same set of your FIRST CHOICE bowlers went to the Ashes too. Patto made so much noise about doing something but he himself didn't last the tour.

Starc looked impressive vs SL & WI when playing AT HOME & in FAV CONDITIONS but looked absolutely toothless in India & was perhaps a better batsman than a bowler --- that tells you something.

Cummins is the only one Eng should be wary of but where is he? MIA since Elvis released Jalilhouse Break???

Yup, 0-7 is ample proof of how well you can compete with or without your First Choice Bowlers.

Don't tell me about 0-8, we allegedly don't care for tests but you guys do yet you are 0-7.

Posted by paulkate72 on (November 8, 2013, 9:59 GMT)

Change from the bowlders here: why is Usman Khwarja not being talked about as a Test player this Ashes? Fine batsman who's done very little wrong, but seems to have fallen by the wayside. Could it be that his move from NSW to Qld hasn't been a good career move?

Posted by PrasPunter on (November 8, 2013, 9:54 GMT)

@xtrafalgarx , absolutely - amidst all the gloom, thats something that we can be proud of - our fast bowling depth. Not sure if they have a similar depth.

Posted by nzcricket174 on (November 8, 2013, 9:32 GMT)

lol another injury to Josh Hazlewood. Sorry mate I rate you highly, but come on, you gotta get on the field...

Posted by Optic on (November 8, 2013, 9:09 GMT)

Don't personally like to see any young fast bowler break down, no matter what Country they play for, it's the best part of the game for me. Saying that I know Aus have Cummins, Pattinson & Starc out, but still I wouldn't have thought Hazelwood would be anywhere near the side. Surely it would be equivalent of someone like Shahzad or Topley breaking down for England.

Posted by Not_Another_Keybored_Expert on (November 8, 2013, 8:51 GMT)

I might rock up to the 1st test match, maybe I could get a bowl for Australia the way things are going.

Posted by xtrafalgarx on (November 8, 2013, 8:36 GMT)

@FFL: Not sure what you are talking about. We have 5/6 first choice bowlers out of action, and can still cough up an attack good enough to compete.

Posted by Lmaotsetung on (November 8, 2013, 8:04 GMT)

maybe now that England's secret cookbook is out in the open, the aussies might want to try some of those recipes :-)

Posted by cricketsubh on (November 8, 2013, 8:01 GMT)

hazlewood no he is not ready for test cricket he need to improve his pace .

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (November 8, 2013, 7:58 GMT)

What's everyone has noticed this week is that the previously hailed 'bowling stocks' of Australia are quite the opposite. Which goes well with the modern Australian team under Lehamnn: All talk, no action.

Posted by ShutTheGate on (November 8, 2013, 7:56 GMT)

gee we're having an unlucky run with young quicks. Hopefully Pattinson is fit soon.

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Daniel BrettigClose
Daniel Brettig Assistant editor Daniel Brettig had been a journalist for eight years when he joined ESPNcricinfo, but his fascination with cricket dates back to the early 1990s, when his dad helped him sneak into the family lounge room to watch the end of day-night World Series matches well past bedtime. Unapologetically passionate about indie music and the South Australian Redbacks, Daniel's chief cricketing achievement was to dismiss Wisden Almanack editor Lawrence Booth in the 2010 Ashes press match in Perth - a rare Australian victory that summer.
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