Hazlewood: ‘Maybe Coults can crack open a few guys early’

Australia quick Josh Hazlewood believes the inclusion of Nathan Coulter-Nile (in local XI at Perth) — who picked up the wicket of India skipper Virat Kohli multiple times in his recent tour of India — will hold the hosts in good stead in the warm-up fixture this weekend.

Australia quick Josh Hazlewood backed compatriot Nathan Coulter-Nile to expose England’s inexperienced batting line-up in the two-day warm-up match that starts on Saturday.   -  GETTY IMAGES

 

Australia quick Josh Hazlewood backed compatriot Nathan Coulter-Nile to expose England’s inexperienced batting line-up in the two-day warm-up match that starts on Saturday.

The visiting side will take on a local XI in Perth. Coulter-Nile — who returned from a decent limited-overs series in India — is a surprise inclusion in the local XI squad.

Read: Smith out to re-open England’s Ashes ‘scars’

Hazlewood believes Coulter-Nile’s selection is a positive for the Aussies. “Maybe he can crack open a few guys early and create a few scars I guess in their top order and middle order. It will be their first real hit-out in Australia. To have a guy like Coults there to warm them up and maybe create a few scars would be nice,” he told cricket.com.au.

The 26-year-old — along with Mitchell Starc and Pat Cummins — expects The Ashes to be a bouncer barrage. “That's why I always bowl when they're bowling in the nets, I don't have to face them," he added.

“On that Gabba wicket, you always want to use it to its advantage. They're not going to be scared of me or Nathan (Lyon), but the other two bowlers put fear into the batsmen. That's part of their game, bowling fast and bowling short on occasions. They can take three or four really quick ones and really crack the game wide open,” said Hazlewood, who was out of action for a few weeks after he picked up a side strain during the tour of Bangladesh in September.

Also read: Bayliss writes off Stokes for Ashes participation

The three speedsters haven’t featured in the same Test XI yet, but the Ashes battle could bring all of them aboard. “We don't really talk about it too much. I guess because it hasn't happened. It's great to get both of them together and we've got a pretty good record when we're all together,” he quipped.