Bollinger and Siddle to fight for final pacer slot for Ashes opener
Sydney: The Australian selectors are still undecided over the choice of the third fast bowler, as they decide the make-up of the team’s pace attack for the first Test at the Gabba.
With Greg Chappell indicating Australia would play only three quicks in Brisbane, NSW left-armer Doug Bollinger and Victorian Peter Siddle are likely to find themselves jostling for the final pacer berth.
Tasmanian bowler Ben Hilfenhaus is a certainty, as is speedster Mitchell Johnson, The Sydney Morning Herald reports.
Bollinger has enjoyed a stellar 12 months in the Test side since getting a recall, claiming 47 wickets at 22.02, but is at risk of entering the Ashes lacking match practice.
“There’s plenty of bowling and plenty of cricket coming up for me to get into swing. I am bowling enough. Everything is going well at the moment, everything is on track,” Bollinger said.
Bollinger is confidant selectors would look at his recent record and pick him as long as he emerged from those matches unscathed.
Siddle, on the comeback trail from a serious back injury, underlined his Test credentials last week with six wickets against Tasmania in Melbourne.
Chief selector Andrew Hilditch, after picking Siddle to play in the current matches against Sri Lanka, said last week that he was an integral part of Australia’s plans for the Ashes.
“Peter is a key bowler in the squad in all forms of the game and is ready to take his place,” Hilditch said.