Hauritz urns his chance in Ashes

NATHAN Hauritz has played against England in three Ashes Test matches.

The 29-year-old former Hervey Bay junior is still in the hunt to play his fourth against the arch enemy starting at the Gabba on Thursday week.

Hauritz, an off-spinner who has played in 17 Tests and 55 one-day internationals to date, was yesterday named in Australia's 17-man squad for the first Test.

But Hauritz, is not the only slow bowler in the squad, which includes one more player than England's entire touring party.

Tasmanian left-arm spinner Xavier Doherty and Hauritz's New South Wales teammate, Steve Smith, are also in the squad, a squad which will be trimmed to 12 or 13 next week.

Not surprisingly, Hauritz said he was glad to be picked.

“But there is more work to do over the coming week,” the former Torquay State School and Urangan State High student said from Sydney.

“I just need to bowl well and do what I do, and go from there.”

Whether Hauritz gets the final nod remains to be seen with chief selector Andrew Hilditch saying it's going to be a tough call to make.

“Nathan Hauritz has performed exceptionally well over the past 12 months for Australia and one of the biggest decisions we will need to make is whether we go into the first Test in Brisbane with a right-arm off-spinner or with the variation of a left-arm orthodox bowler,” Hilditch said.

If Hauritz does get to wear his prized baggy green again, that will be good news for the Hervey Bay Cricket Association.

Before Australia's recent tour of India, Hauritz said he would donate 10 per cent of all the prize money he earns during the summer to the association.

AUSTRALIAN SQUAD

Australia's 17-man squad for the first Ashes Test:

Ricky Ponting (capt), Michael Clarke (vice-capt), Shane Watson, Simon Katich, Callum Ferguson, Mike Hussey, Marcus North, Usman Khawaja, Brad Haddin, Nathan Hauritz, Steve Smith, Mitchell Johnson, Peter Siddle, Ben Hilfenhaus, Doug Bollinger, Ryan Harris, Xavier Doherty

Nathan Hauritz's Test statistics:

Overall: 17 matches, 426 runs at 25.05, 63 wickets at 34.98

Ashes: three matches, 45 runs at 22.5, 10 wickets at 32.1



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