Sydney: Australia is reportedly set to take a chance on fast bowler Ryan Harris for the fourth Ashes Test at Durham following his performance in the third Test, drawn between the tourists and the hosts due to rain.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Harris, who now has now has 11 wickets in two matches in this series, was a standout for Australia again on Monday as he claimed the top-order wickets of Alastair Cook and Jonathan Trott in quick succession alongside Peter Siddle that was only halted by the rain.
The report further said that Harris has proved again that when fit he is an automatic choice in Australia`s best attack, although it added that Australia will watch his fitness closely over the three days` break until the fourth Test at Chester-le-Street as they set their sights on rendering England`s retention of the Ashes as hollow as possible.
According to Australian captain Michael Clarke, getting Harris up for Durham is realistic, adding that he is confident that the bowlers are in good hands with outstanding physiotherapists and backed a chance of being able to pick their best XI for Durham.
Although the report mentioned that the weather was a killer blow to Australia`s hopes of victory in Manchester, it may have helped Harris to continue building on his Test figures since his late debut and help the tourists` strive for their readjusted goal to square the series.
The report further said that Harris missed the majority of the home summer after a shoulder operation before playing the final three games of the Sheffield Shield season and was then sent home from the Indian Premier League in April after only three matches for precautionary reasons after an Achilles complaint.
Australia has already lost one fast bowler from the Ashes campaign - James Pattinson suffered a stress fracture of his back at Lord`s - and will be tempted to use back-up Jackson Bird if there is any concern about another injury, the report added.