'Insane' selectors slammed

2010-12-09 08:56
Mitchell Johnson (AP)
Adelaide - Former Australia skipper Kim Hughes has slammed selectors for being 'too precious' with Australia's bowlers and said resting dropped paceman Mitchell Johnson before a likely recall for the third Ashes Test would be lunacy.

Johnson was omitted after finishing with figures of 0-170 during the drawn first Test in Brisbane, but could return in Perth after a revamped Australian attack was again put to the sword by England's batsmen in the second Test defeat in Adelaide this week.

Johnson would be rested from state cricket duty this weekend to work with bowling coaches on his technique, local media reported, sparking heated speculation that selectors had pinned their hopes on the 29-year-old finding line and length in time for Perth. England lead the five-test series 1-0.

"Resting Johnson would be absolutely ridiculous," Hughes, who captained Australia on-and-off from 1979-1984, fumed in Thursday's Herald Sun newspaper.

"The bloke couldn't bowl a hoop down a hill. He's spent a week in the nets and now he's going to spend another week in the nets.

"It's insane. We need this bloke bowling in match conditions. I don't care how much work you do in the nets, you need to bowl in the middle."

Hughes accused selectors of mollycoddling the erratic 2009 ICC Cricketer of the Year, whose pace and late swing can be deadly when on song, but also horribly wayward on off-days.

"It's pathetic. These blokes get a million dollars a year and it's too much for him to bowl for Western Australia and back up for a Test match," added Hughes of the left-armer, who was scarred by a poor bowling performance during England's first Ashes win at Lord's in more than 70 years last year.

"Dennis Lillee would play 80 days-plus. Today's bowlers play 40 days. We've just become too precious. We're wrapping our elite players in cotton wool."

Despite lacking penetration at Brisbane, Johnson's chances have been buoyed by the impotence of pace trio Peter Siddle, Doug Bollinger and Ryan Harris, who managed only five wickets between them at Adelaide.

Harris, the pick of the Australian bowlers with 84-2, had had sustained a minor shoulder injury during the second test but had been passed fit for selection after having a scan, the team's doctor Alex Kountouris said.

Australia must make at least one forced change for Perth, with in-form opening batsman Simon Katich ruled out with an achilles injury.

Phillip Hughes, who was sensationally dropped mid-series during the Ashes tour last year after being roughed up by England's quicks, was "first cab off the rank", to replace Katich, Ponting said after the Adelaide loss.

The team will name their side for Perth on Friday. The third Test starts December 16.



Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
Live Video Streaming
  • Blitz
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
  • SS1
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
  • SS2
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
  • SS3
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Previous Results

Date Match Result

Should the Proteas have gone for the win after needing 16 runs from 19 balls with three wickets in hand against India?

Love 2 Meet

Got something you'd like to get off your chest? Got a burning desire to air an opinion? If so, be sure to sign-up on Sport24's FORUM!

Latest blogs

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

Newsletters Sign up for the Morning Glory, Super 15 and Soccer newsletters

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

Mobile Sport24 on your mobile phone - WAP, alerts, downloads, services

Forum Have your Say on Sport24's brand new Forum!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

iPhone Latest Sport24 news on your iPhone

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

Blogs Yes your opinion counts. Get it out there

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.