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Shirin Sadikot in Ranchi

We haven’t clicked as batting group: Hauritz

Brisbane Heat spinner says their batsmen haven’t been able to read bowlers

Brisbane Heat’s CLT20 debut has turned out to be a rather forgettable. The Big Bash League 2012-13 champions, after losing three matches in the Group Stage, have crashed out of the knockouts with a game to go.

Their eight-wicket loss to Chennai Super Kings in Ranchi highlighted the Heat’s batting failure in the tournament, as the top six batsmen fell for 66 runs. It was only the 71-run seventh-wicket partnership between Ben Cutting (42*) and Chris Hartley (35) that took the team to a respectable 137.

The Heat batsmen struggled mostly against CSK spinners – Ravindra Jadeja 4-0-18-2, R Ashwin 4-1-10-1 and Suresh Raina 3-0-9-1 – hence adding fuel to the perception of the Australian batsmen’s vulnerability against tweakers.

At the end of the match, clt20.com spoke to Heat’s lead spinner, Nathan Hauritz, to get a bowler’s perspective on what he thinks is the right way for his fellow countrymen to handle the likes of him. Hauritz also spoke about his own bowling plans in Indian conditions. Although the off-spinner went for 36 runs in three overs against CSK – the dew played a big role as it was difficult to grip the wet ball – he had registered fine figures of 1/14 and 2/22 in the Heat’s first two outings.

Excerpts from his interview:

This was a bitter experience for the team but you bowled well in the first two matches

Yes, but it was a bit different tonight as it was pretty tough to bowl with that wet ball. There wasn’t much pace off the wicket as well. But it was a good experience for the boys to play in front of this crowd and playing against CSK was great.

Batting let Brisbane Heat down in all three games. What went wrong in that department?

I just feel that we’re not clicking as a batting group as a moment and definitely haven’t shown our potential. Everyone’s trying as hard as they can and hitting as many balls as they can but we haven’t been able to do the same in the middle and score some runs.

The perception that Aussie batsmen don’t play spin well has gain strength of late. Being a lead spinner yourself, how do you assess that?

Every time an Australian team tours here, the Indian spinners do very well. At the same time, when the Indian teams come to Australia, they struggle against quick bowling. We don’t play on many wickets that turn in Australia and we get a bit shown when we come here.

Do you work closely with the batsmen to give prepare them for playing spin bowling?

Yes, you try and work together. The batsmen try and take cues on different types of bowlers but at the end of the day, it boils down to how they play in the middle and how I bowl out there. It’s about anticipating the bowler’s next move and we’re probably a couple of steps behind in that regards.

The Indian fast bowlers who have grown bowling on unresponsive tracks find it tough to bowl in friendly overseas conditions. As a spinner, how is it for you bowling in India?

It’s just how fast you adjust. You have to adapt to the conditions as quickly as possible. In this tournament the wickets haven’t turned too much. This (Ranchi) track was probably the one that turned the most. But again, it’s been very hard to hold the ball tonight. I don’t know how (Ravindra) Jadeja and Ashwin did it; they’re probably used to these conditions.

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