Image courtesy of: Zimbio
Australia pace bowler Josh Hazlewood has announced that the Baggy Greens will be looking to dismiss New Zealand captain Brendon McCullum in the early stages of their World Cup match in Auckland on Saturday.
Hazlewood’s comments come after McCullum broke the record for the fastest half-century in World Cup history during his side’s eight-wicket win over England.
“A lot of the senior guys have seen McCullum do his work in the Indian Premier League so we’ll have team meetings to discuss a plan [against him],” Hazlewood said. “You’re hoping he doesn’t hit it straight back at you for starters. He’s obviously a dangerous player who goes about his business differently to a lot of other openers.
“But there’s no better practice than bowling to Finch and Warner who are similar players.
“McCullum at the top of order is key. We want to minimise the damage he can do. The boundaries here are a touch bigger square which we might be able to use to our advantage. It’s quite short straight, but that’s what happens when you come to different grounds.”
Even though Hazlewood has never played at Eden Park before, he noted that there are a few grounds in Australia that are very similar.
“There are a few grounds in Australia like this such as Sydney’s so you’ve got to get used to it,” he said.
Hazlewood also admitted that he is uncertain about whether he will be included in the playing XI for the highly anticipated match.
“Not sure yet, it’s pretty good to have lot of competition for spots at the moment with quicks and all-rounders, so we will just wait and see,” he said. “It’s obviously a big game and hopefully I’ll get the nod. Both teams are flying so it’s going to be a good contest.”