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Warne pushes Harwood's case

The Victorian, according to the champion leg-spinner, is a very good flat wicket bowler.

india Updated: Mar 03, 2006 19:39 IST

Shane Warne urged Australian selectors on Friday to pick his Victorian team-mate Shane Harwood for this month's Test series in South Africa.

Warne said although Michael Kasprowicz, Jason Gillespie or Shaun Tait would adequately replace Glenn McGrath— who is staying at home to support his wife through cancer treatment— he believed Harwood could also do the job.

Test cricket's leading wicket-taker said Harwood had proved himself an expert exponent of performing on unresponsive, flat wickets in Australia and could do the same in South Africa.

"The times we've been to South Africa, there have been absolute flat roads," the master leg-spinner said in Melbourne on Friday.

"I bowled 70 overs in one (innings) in Cape Town, where the first Test is, which is flat. So you need flat wicket bowlers.

"That's what Harwood is very good at. On a flat wicket, he's bowled four games here at the Junction Oval— he's a very, very good flat wicket bowler.

"I'd be looking at the conditions that the players bowl in and that's why I'd be leaning towards Harwood because he plays on this sort of wicket.

"He's used to bowling on a flat 'road', he's used to trying to reverse swing, he's used to trying to do those things, he's got a quick bouncer and no-one has seen him."

The squad is expected to be announced early next week ahead of the first Test on March 16.

First Published: Mar 03, 2006 19:39 IST