Tag: Nathan Hauritz

Do you want to buy Nathan Hauritz a pint?

A rare picture of something from Star Wars appears on the internet

We do. The poor bastard. It’s bad enough going through life feeling like everything’s out to get you without repeatedly being confronted with evidence that it is. Hauritz must have offended the Moirae at some point. Maybe, with that face, they’ve mistaken him for a child and feel that he’s getting ahead of himself.

As an Australian cricketer, Hauritz will be most bothered about the Ashes and the World Cup. He missed the Ashes for no sensible reason, as proven by the fact that the selectors felt they had to return to him for the World Cup. Now he’s dislocated his shoulder.

It’s the fact that he’s in such proximity to these events that must make it so painful for him. Imagine being seven years old and being desperate for the Millennium Falcon. No-one has ever wanted anything quite so much as you want the Millennium Falcon. You’re only seven, but you’ve actually taken the trouble to remember how many Ls and Ns are in its name.

Your birthday comes and goes. No Millennium Falcon. Christmas comes and goes. No Millennium Falcon. Your next birthday comes and goes and you still don’t get a Millennium Falcon. It feels like it will never happen, but then it does.

The next Christmas, you are given the Millennium Falcon and it is everything you’d dreamed it would be. In fact, it is better. Your favourite Star Wars figure, Ree-Yees, can sit in the cockpit and it makes space weapon noises when you press a button. You cry a bit with gratitude and sleep with it right next to the bed.

Boxing Day morning, you get up and put your foot right through the middle of the damn thing. The dream is over. Nothing will console you – not even an offer of 568ml of a fermented alcoholic beverage from someone who writes a website on the far side of the world.

Australia’s captain and spinners

The more we think about it, the more these two things go hand-in-hand.

The situation was this. Nathan Hauritz got the boot because he got wellied in India like just about every other spinner who ever goes over there. Demented selections ensued.

Maybe Hauritz offended Ricky Ponting by suggesting that he stop setting fields that were complete dog toss – we may never know. What we do know is that Ponting is pretty damn certain he doesn’t want Hauritz in his team ever again, even if he has to pick a shit spinner or no spinner at all instead.

Xavier Doherty was the shit spinner. Michael Beer was no spinner at all. It couldn’t have gone worse.

So what went wrong, specifically?

Partly it was a ‘grass is greener’ mentality. Shane Warne isn’t playing any more, although some people (desperate idiots) think he should be. Australia don’t have a spin bowler who’s even half as good as Stuart MacGill, so they should stop looking for one.

If you’ve got a bowler that good, you know about him. He isn’t out there disguised as a Beer or a Doherty.

If you’ve got Nathan Hauritz, use him properly. Don’t undermine him. Don’t discard him. If you’ve got a Steve O’Keefe, encourage him; build him up.

You certainly don’t just pick any old spinner and then drop him almost immediately. You tell all your spinners they’re not good enough when you do that, not just the one who’s come and gone.

And the captain?

Ricky Ponting has to take a lot of the blame. 152 Test matches and he doesn’t know how to handle spinners either on or off the field. That’s just embarrassing.

But again, is the grass greener? Ponting might not seem like a great option as captain right now, but he has learnt something in those 152 Tests and if someone can persuade him to drop down the order, he’s almost certainly still worth his place in the Test team, unlike many of the alternatives.

Things aren’t perfect, but hunting for perfection when it doesn’t exist is counterproductive. This isn’t to say we don’t think Ponting should be asked to step down. It’s to say think about it. There were plenty of other things wrong with Australia’s Ashes teams.

Nathan Hauritz gets the boot | Australian selectors and spinners

Nathan Hauritz has also been batting as well as Mike Hussey

We wrote about how Australia’s selectors don’t know what they’re doing last week. Nowhere is this more apparent than when it comes to spin bowlers.

Spoilt by Warne and MacGill for so long, there seems to be a ‘grass is greener’ philosophy, even when the grass in manifestly not greener, it’s actually just the odd yellowing blade poking up through mud and cat shit.

Nathan Hauritz averages 35 in Test cricket. Xavier Doherty averages 48 in first-class cricket. So Hauritz had a tough time bowling to Sehwag, Dravid, Tendulkar and Laxman in India – if that’s a capital offence then Dale Steyn’s going to find himself in his own version of The Road, wandering the world, vainly looking for someone to talk to.

Hauritz is no great shakes, but he’s done a decent job. He got a go because Jason Krejza was a bit hit and miss. Krejza took 12 wickets on his debut, but has only played one Test since then. We thought he might get more of a go.

Other than that, Beau Casson and Bryce McGain have each played a single Test. If you were going to make your mind up about a player on the basis of a single match, McGain’s Test debut was fairly persuasive, but one match is still one match and how Beau Casson got even that many is a question that demands an answer.

The overall impression is of a bunch of people desperately searching for something that manifestly does not exist. Or maybe it does exist. Maybe it’s Xavier Doherty? Here’s a hint: it isn’t Xavier Doherty.

Nathan Hauritz – number one Australian spinner

Least Australian face everrrr

Shane Warne said that Nathan Hauritz was being given a crap field by Ricky Ponting today. Being as Hauritz went for 76 in 12 overs on a fifth day Indian pitch, we’d guess that Ponting was only using four or five fielders.

Hauritz is currently said to be Australia’s number one spinner. Quite apart from the qualitative judgement in that, he doesn’t even fulfil the rest of the description. He’s a finger spinner, which is the wrong kind for his nation and he hasn’t even got the decency to LOOK Australian.

Look at him. What would you say? Dutch?

A girl from the Netherlands described to us how you could look Dutch once. She said the look was ‘kind of okay, but there’s something wrong’.

Amusingly, she was having to define the look because she’d just asked someone else in the conversation – a stranger – whether they were Dutch or not.

Australia’s bowlers aren’t flattered by comparisons with the past

Largely because they’re a bit toss. 425 ain’t good enough and England haven’t knackered out Australia’s four bowlers as much as they should have done.

Mitchell Johnson

Mitchell Johnson or James Anderson? Easy.

Johnson has promised a lot, but unless you love non-bouncing wides, he hasn’t really delivered. We love non-bouncing wides from ‘once in a generation’ Australian opening bowlers, so we’re suddenly a massive Mitchell Johnson fan.

Ben Hilfenhaus

When the ball swings, Ben Hilfenhaus looks a handy bowler, otherwise he’s a bit innocuous. This makes him an Australian James Anderson, only without the inswinger or the reverse outswinger, or the reverse inswinger.

He’s basically a quarter as good as Jimmy.

Peter Siddle

Peter Siddle‘s the opposite of Mitchell Johnson. Where Johnson seems to get wickets while bowling dross, Siddle bowls well and gets nowt for it. He generally acts like a dick, which is what you want from Australian cricketers, so paradoxically, we find ourself liking him.

Nathan Hauritz

When you’re describing an Australian spinner as ‘worthy’, you know you want pitches that offer a bit of turn.

We’ve gone easy on Mitchell Johnson in this post. We didn’t over at The Wisden Cricketer.

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