Hohns happy with solo spinner - Sports News - Fanatics - the world's biggest events

Hohns happy with solo spinner

By Alex Lowe 14/11/2002 05:06:04 PM Comments (0)

Chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns insists Australia still has all its bases covered despite entering the second Ashes clash in Adelaide with just one recognised spinner.

Australia has opted against calling in either Nathan Hauritz or Stuart MacGill for the Test on the spin-friendly wicket at the Adelaide Oval, in favour of retaining the squad which trounced England by 384 runs in Brisbane.

Whether to go in with one spinner or two is the annual selection dilemma ahead of the Adelaide Test, but Australia's performance at the Gabba, plus Brett Lee's 10-wicket haul for NSW, persuaded the panel against making any changes.

Hohns explained: "The option is always there to include two spinners but what we've found, in Brisbane and in the recent past, is the make up of the side with three fast bowlers and one spinner has done the job well in most conditions.

"So after an emphatic win like that we thought it wasn't necessary to make any changes at all."

Hohns' selection panel colleague Allan Border, who is in Hobart coaching the Australia A side, added: "The Adelaide wicket can offer turn but we have something special in Shane Warne and Darren Lehmann can do a job quite tidily with his left-arm spinners.

"The wicket can be a bit up and down. However the wicket plays we think we have it covered."

Queensland off-spinner Nathan Hauritz would have been the likely spinning choice, after being included in recent touring squads.

But Lee, who was named as 12th man for the first Test, ensured he remained in the mix by returning to star for the Blues against Tasmania in the Pura Cup.

Border said: "Brett Lee going back was a successful trial. He was given some clear messages and he responded exactly as we wanted him to respond."

However, Hohns indicated that although Lee's NSW performance saw off any threat from a second spinner, he may not have done enough to oust Andy Bichel from the Australia XI.

Hohns added it is yet to be decided whether the named 12th man will return to play Pura Cup cricket.

"Once again the option is available to us and we used it in Brisbane," he said.

"Of course it's not something we necessarily want to use all the time. With Brett having played two games in a row fairly close together, it may well be we decide to leave him with the team this time."

There remains a chance that both Bichel and Lee could play in Adelaide, with Jason Gillespie's calf still causing him gyp.

Gillespie bowled just 24 overs in the game, finishing with match figures of 3-64.

Border said: "We will have to monitor how Jason Gillespie comes up. He bowled fantastically well in the Test but still seemed to be troubled by a calf injury.

"We will monitor that and see how it pans out in the next week."

AUSTRALIA squad: Steve Waugh (capt), Adam Gilchrist (v-capt), Andrew Bichel, Jason Gillespie, Matthew Hayden, Justin Langer, Brett Lee, Darren Lehmann, Damien Martyn, Glenn McGrath, Ricky Ponting, Shane Warne.

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