Hauritz happy to send Ashes critics spinning
Australian off-spinner Nathan Hauritz, who was widely derided at the start of the Ashes, is preparing to put his critics firmly in their place at the series decider at The Oval starting on Thursday.cricket Updated: Aug 17, 2009 13:42 IST
Australian off-spinner Nathan Hauritz, who was widely derided at the start of the Ashes, is preparing to put his critics firmly in their place at the series decider at The Oval starting on Thursday.
In his three Tests in the contest, Hauritz has taken 10 wickets at 32.10 runs each and is due to replace seamer Stuart Clark in the team for The Oval where, with the series level at 1-1, Australia only need to draw to retain the Ashes.
"My main goal was to play one Test then to take it from there," said the 27-year-old.
"To do a steady job with nothing outstanding has been good and I've been happy to play a role.
"Every Test you play you learn more about yourself and what you can or can't do.
"Before I came out I was labelled a defensive bowler who didn't spin the ball.
"But I think I've shown on a spinning wicket what I can do. That defensive tag was weird but I can't change people's perception.
"I suppose that came about because I didn't spin it that much when I first started.
"It doesn't really faze me. I can also play a role even if it's not spinning. I think I've done okay."
Australia levelled the series with an innings victory in the fourth Test at Headingley after England had nipped ahead with a second Test triumph at Lord's.
But Hauritz believes the momentum shifted in Australia's favour during the drawn third Test at Edgbaston.
England were frustrated by Michael Clarke and Marcus North on the final day as they attempted to bowl out the tourists with victory seemingly within their grasp.
Hauritz believes the performance also restored the Australian bowlers' self-belief just days before demolishing England at Headingley by an innings and 80 runs.
"The mood started to change at Edgbaston," said Hauritz.
"The way our quicks bowled - with more purpose and aggression - showed they were starting to click and get back to where they were in South Africa.
"Since then they've been bowling the way they did in South Africa.
"The mood wasn't dark before Edgbaston but after then the bowlers had more belief in what they were doing.
"They were starting to land the ball in the area and do a few other things. The guys showed the England batsmen they can swing the ball.
"We felt when Michael and Marcus batted out that last that it was a turning point."