Josh Hazlewood will miss the day-night Test in Adelaide, which starts on Thursday, due to the injury sustained in the nine-victory victory at The Gabba; Jhye Richardson expected to feature in the second Test
Last Updated: 13/12/21 12:01am
Australia will be without bowler Josh Hazlewood for the second Ashes Test due to injury, with Jhye Richardson the likely replacement.
The 30-year-old sustained a side strain during Australia’s nine-wicket win at The Gabba, where the hosts went 1-0 up in the series, with Hazlewood used for just 14 of the 103 overs in England’s second innings.
Fox Sports reported on Sunday that Hazlewood left his Australian team-mates to fly home and will miss the day-night Test in Adelaide, beginning on Thursday, and the news was subsequently confirmed.
Hazlewood’s fitness was questioned when he did not bowl during the evening session of day three in Brisbane, despite Joe Root and Dawid Malan putting on a big third-wicket partnership, although batter Marnus Labuschagne told reporters after the close of play that Hazlewood was “fine”.
He returned to bowl six overs the following morning, ending with figures of 1-32, with captain Pat Cummins admitting that his paceman was a “little bit sore” after Australia wrapped up victory.
“The key is we don’t want to put him in jeopardy for the whole series, so we’ll take our time,” Cummins added on Hazlewood’s fitness.
“It’s a five-Test series and he’s important for us, we didn’t want to blow him out of the water on day three.”
Cricket Australia confirmed a decision on Hazlewood’s availability for the Boxing Day Test will be made in due course.
Uncapped Michael Neser put himself in consideration for an Australia debut after taking five wickets for Australia A against England Lions, although former Australian captain Ricky Ponting has backed Jhye Richardson to feature in the second Test.
“Richardson was obviously very close to playing this Test instead of Starc and he’s in great form,” Pointing said.
“When the ball’s not swinging and seaming, I’d have him ahead of Neser as far as an all-round bowling package is concerned.
“Neser obviously thrives in swinging, seaming conditions that he gets at The Gabba – and might get at some stage in Adelaide – but I still think Richardson gets the nod.”