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Oz pacer Harris out in front for Kiwi Test tour spot

Posted By: Staff

Sydney, Feb.12 (ANI): Blossoming New South Wales fast bowler Ryan Harris is likely to be rewarded for his exceptional progress in the 50-over game with his first Test tour.

Harris is the favourite to win the fourth and final pace place on March's two-Test tour of New Zealand on the back of his barnstorming form in one-day cricket, where he has taken 16 wickets in four games against Pakistan and West Indies, The Age reports.

Four fast bowlers are certain to be chosen in what is expected to be a squad of about 13 players for the New Zealand Test series, which features back-to-back matches in Wellington and Hamilton. Victoria seamer Clint McKay is the early favourite to win a place in the Test side.

Though highly rated as a one-day bowler, McKay's performance in his sole Test against West Indies in Perth, which yielded just 1-101, did not take the breath away and he is under heavy pressure from Harris.

Former Test swing bowler Damien Fleming believes Harris must be given a berth in the squad.

"I would be taking McKay and Harris for sure," Fleming said.

"Harris is bowling 145km/h hand grenades at the moment. He is swinging the ball beautifully and really deserves a chance. Players like Ben Cutting, Josh Hazlewood and James Pattinson deserve mentions but Harris is the one."

Cutting, 22, is the leading Sheffield Shield wicket-taker this season and has just taken eight in the match against Tasmania, which finished on Thursday.

"I wouldn't be disappointed if Cutting gets a go but I just think they might keep him a bit longer," Fleming said.

"But he has had a great season." (ANI)

Story first published: Friday, February 12, 2010, 13:26 [IST]
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