Tue, Dec 14, 2010 - Page 19 News List

Nathan Hauritz offloads Test gear, report says

AFP, SYDNEY

Discarded Australian spin bowler Nathan Hauritz has marked his failure to return to the Test team by giving away some of his cricket gear during a yard sale, a report said yesterday.

Hauritz, overlooked for inclusion in the Australian team taking on England in the Ashes, was seen sitting in front of a cardboard box on Saturday outside his apartment in Sydney’s Coogee area, the Daily Telegraph said.

The 29-year-old gave away some of his heavy woollen Test sweaters during the sale, which included cricket books and generic sportswear among general household items, the tabloid said.

“I don’t play for them anymore,” Hauritz simply said.

Hauritz has played 17 Tests for Australia, taking 63 wickets, since earning his first call-up in 2004 for the Test tour of India in which Sachin Tendulkar and VVS Laxman were among his first wickets.

However, after being dropped late in the 2004-2005 season, Hauritz had to wait until 2008-2009 for his second chance even as selectors struggled to fill the void left by the retirement in early 2007 of spin great Shane Warne.

The failure of selectors to choose the right-arm offbreak bowler for the current Ashes series, in which Australia are floundering against England, has baffled many, particularly given Hauritz’s domestic form.

Retired leg-spinner Stuart MacGill said he was dismayed selectors had discarded Hauritz, first for newcomer Xavier Doherty and now for Michael Beer — who only has five first-class games to his name.

“They are clearly telling Nathan Hauritz, ‘You are never playing Test cricket again,’” MacGill told the Daily Telegraph last week.

Ahead of the Ashes, Hauritz said he was devastated at missing a berth for the series, but admitted he was simply not bowling well enough to merit a place.

“I had a good crack there for a while but things didn’t go my way and I need to improve,” he said last month.

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