Ashes 2019: Hazlewood relishing bowling competition within Australia's squad

By Sports Desk August 08, 2019

Josh Hazlewood said the competition within Australia's bowling attack is spurring him on in his bid to play in the second Ashes Test at Lord's.

Hazlewood took 3-34 from 15 overs as Australia – despite some resilient lower-order batting from Charlie Morris – restricted tour-match opponents Worcestershire to 201-9 declared on Thursday.

The paceman missed out on the first Test, with Peter Siddle, James Pattinson and Pat Cummins preferred for the clash at Edgbaston, with Australia defeating England by 251 runs.

Worcestershire offered little resistance as Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc (2-56) ripped through the top order in the morning session on Thursday, though Joe Leach's side rallied in the afternoon before declaring.

Hazlewood's form may not be enough to force him into Justin Langer and Tim Paine's plans for Lord's, though the 28-year-old believes the competition in Australia's squad can only help them as they look to double their lead in the series.

"We've got three guys with proper air speed and three guys who seam and swing a bit," Hazlewood said. 

"That's what they've got six quicks for, to have all bases covered. It's just who's bowling the best leading into a particular Test for who gets the nod. It's great competition within the squad.

"I've come back from back-to-back stress fractures, so it could take a while to get back into the swing of things. I feel like I'm getting better and better with each ball and really improving.

"I've just played the one Test at Lord's, but I got used to the slope pretty quickly there and the bowling conditions seem pretty favourable at the moment so I'd love to get the opportunity."

Australia made 92-1 in the evening session, with Marcus Harris reaching 62 not out as the visitors took a 157-run lead into day three.

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