Johnson may get one last chance for continuing Ashes duty at Northampton

Posted By: Staff

London, July 21 (ANI): Australian fast bowler Mitchell Johnson is expected to be handed one last chance to keep his Test spot by impressing in Australia's practice match at Northampton starting Friday.

The national set-up is running out of patience before next week's third Ashes Test in Birmingham following the erratic left-armer's disastrous efforts with the ball at Lord's.

Johnson returned match figures of 3-200 off 38.4 overs in England's 115-run win in northwest London, his performance continually undermining the Australian attack at the home of cricket.

His wayward efforts have put him on the brink of being dropped but he is tipped to be given a shot at influencing on-duty selector Jamie Cox in the three-day match against Northamptonshire.

Australian skipper Ricky Ponting called on Johnson to recapture the form that had made him one of the most feared bowlers in the world before the Ashes.

"Of course I can see him playing, it was only a couple of games ago that he was bowling as well as anyone around," said Ponting.

"It's grabbing the momentum when you can and running with it for as long as you can that's going to decide this series," he added.

But if Johnson is dropped, Australia have some quality fast bowling options at their disposal.

There is Brett Lee, who is still on the way back from a side strain, or the reliable Stuart Clark who was the nation's leading wicket-taker in the 2006-07 series.

Ponting said Johnson and bowling coach Troy Cooley would be working hard to get the left-armer back on track.(ANI)

Story first published: Tuesday, July 21, 2009, 13:48 [IST]
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