Afridi backs out-of-form Hauritz for place in final eleven

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St.Lucia, May.1 (ANI): Pakistan T20 skipper Shahid Afridi has backed Australia's out of form off spinner Nathan Hauritz for a place in the final eleven in the opening match against the defending champions, saying slow bowlers are likely to play an important role on the sticky Caribbean wickets.

Hauritz is almost certain not to be included in the team for Australia's opening match at the ICC World T20 Championship against Pakistan, as he went wicket less in both practice games.

Australia's chief selector Andrew Hilditch has already hinted that leg-spinning all-rounder Steve Smith and captain Michael Clarke could fill in the spinner's role, but Afridi, who took 4-24 in a splendid display of spin bowling in a warm-up match against Zimbabwe, has suggested that the Kangaroos should go with regular spinners.

"I think you should go with regular spinners on this track, it's not easy to bowl spin, you should be very focused," The Sydney Morning Herald quoted Afridi, as saying.

"I'm not saying it's totally a spinning track, if you've got a good experienced spinner they know how to bowl and where to bowl. I think he's been doing well for the last couple of months and I think on this type of track he will be very difficult for the opposition," the swashbuckling all-rounder added.

However, Hilditch is confident that with a formidable three-man pace attack of Mitchell Johnson, Dirk Nannes and Shaun Tait, Aussies bowlers would be able to restrict opponent batsmen.

"This is pretty close to the balance of the side we wanted.We've obviously got a good pace attack and we're going to use that in these conditions and in Barbados as well. We think we're pretty well placed with spin bowling," Hilditch said.

"Steve Smith did a really good job,we got good spin out of Michael Clarke and David Hussey as well, and of course Nathan Hauritz, and when the conditions are spin-friendly we've got the opportunity to play more spinners," he added. (ANI)

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