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Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins ruled out of second Test, blow ahead of South Africa series, Lance Morris, video

For the second straight summer, Australia’s bowling stocks will be tested with captain Pat Cummins and his fellow quick Josh Hazlewood ruled out of the second Test against the West Indies in Adelaide.
The world class duo were replaced by cult heroes Scott Boland and Michael Neser, who both made their debuts in the Ashes. The decision meant young firebrand quick Lance Morris, the season’s leading wicket taker in Sheffield Shield cricket, was denied the chance to earn a baggy green.

While Cummins was ruled out earlier in the week, Hazlewood was a late scratching with news of his withdrawal only filtering out around noon on Thursday.
It is the second straight summer the duo missed the Adelaide day-night Test, after Cummins (Covid) and Hazlewood (rib) were stunning withdrawals during last year’s Ashes.
Ahead of the Test stand-in captain Steve Smith revealed selectors did not want to risk Cummins given the heavy workload over the next 12 months, but said he was likely to return in time for next week’s series opener against the Proteas in Brisbane.
“I don’t think he was too far away (from playing) and he will continue to build this week,” Smith said of Cummins.

“But with what’s coming up, a big series against South Africa and then Tests in India, there’s a lot of cricket.

“I think we’ve made the right call and he’ll be fine to go for the next Test match I’m sure.”

Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins of Australia chat.

Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins were both ruled out of the second Test in Adelaide. Photo: Quinn Rooney – CA/Cricket Australia via Getty Images

On Thursday, moments after winning the toss and electing to bat, a relaxed looking Smith couldn’t help but chuckle given the coincidence of captaining Australia for the second time in as many years at the venue.
“I had a bit more time to get my head around it this year,” he quipped. 
“Unfortunately, Cummo came up no good, but hopefully he’ll be back for the next Test match.”
The news might not be as good for Hazlewood, with Smith coy on his fitness.
“It was yesterday evening (he was ruled out),” Smith said. 
“Unfortunately, Joshy’s pulled up not so well. So Michael Neser gets another opportunity here. He bowled really well here last year and he gets another go.
“I’m not entirely sure at the moment (if he will be fit next week). The medical staff will monitor him closely this week, but fingers crossed.”

Lance Morris of Western Australia celebrates taking the wicket of James Peirson of Queensland.

Lance Morris was left out of Australia’s XI despite Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins being ruled out against the West Indies. Photo: Bradley Kanaris/Getty Images

Hazlewood’s absence against South Africa would be a big blow, with the Proteas behind Australia in second spot on the ICC Test Championship.
Selectors could have unleashed West Australian quick Morris, who is this season’s leading wicket taker in the Sheffield Shield with 27 wickets at 27.40 and was a surprise call-up for the series.
Instead, they have turned to medium pacers Boland and Neser.
Their selections are rewards for their patience and past performances for Australia. Boland has 10 wickets at 24 while Neser has 24 wickets at 14.55 to start the Shield season. 
Yet former Australian star turned selector Mark Waugh said he would have liked to have seen Morris, who is capable of bowling quicker than 150km/h, picked over one of Boland or Neser, who are similar bowlers.
“I thought they might’ve went with him ahead of Neser given that he’s got that extra pace. Boland and Neser are a similar sort of pace,” Waugh said on Fox Cricket. 
“It would’ve been tempting (to pick Morris). They’ve brought him into the squad so he’s obviously on the radar which is a good sign for Morris.

“150km/h under lights – he would’ve been a handful.”

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