Australian pacer Josh Hazlewood hopes to play in the final two Test matches of the ongoing Ashes series. The only condition is that his bowling workload does not become a problem in the fourth Test at Old Trafford. He has bowled nearly 80 overs for 12 wickets since he was brought back at Lord’s.
“The body’s really good. I felt a lot better at Headingley than Lord’s, just getting those miles into the legs in that first Test (back),” he said to reporters. “I can’t see why not unless we bowl a mountain of overs in the next game but body’s feeling really good and happy to play both if possible.”
Hazlewood was excluded from the first Ashes Test in Birmingham at the eleventh hour, but was brought back for the second Test at Lord’s. However, this was his first Test match in eight months since his injury. He finished with career-best match figures of 9-115 at Headingley, which included a fifer, conceding 30 runs. Although Steve Smith is also expecting to return in the fourth Test.
“It certainly feels like I’m bowling well. Ever since I bowled at Worcester a few weeks back, I took it into Lord’s and into Headingley. I think I’m not trying to do too much, trying to be pretty simple, not trying and swing the ball at all really, occasionally I do when it gets a bit older,” he added. “But just hitting that right length with the new ball, making them play, not trying and do too much, keep it simple.”
Hazlewood’s workload has become a lot in the Test matches where he has played so far. At Lord’s, he bowled 35 overs whereas in Leeds he bowled 43.5 overs. However, He was rested from Australia’s tour match in Derby. The fourth Test will begin on Wednesday (September 4) and it will be interesting to know who will have the last laugh.