Josh Hazlewood returns as Ashes dogfight moves to Manchester

The fourth Ashes Test will be played at the Old Trafford Cricket Ground in Manchester.

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Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins
Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Australia captain Pat Cummins has confirmed that Josh Hazlewood will play in the fourth Ashes Test, which begins on July 19 at the Old Trafford Cricket Ground in Manchester. The veteran pacer comes in for seamer Scott Boland for the crucial fourth Test match.

Hazlewood was recovering from an injury before the start of the five-game series after missing the World Test Championship (WTC) final against India at The Oval earlier in June. However, he bowled through the first two Tests without an issue before being rested for the third Test at Headingley. Notably, in the first two Tests, the 32-year-old picked up three and five wickets, respectively.

Hazlewood’s inclusion in the penultimate Test against England, as Australia considers going into a Test without a specialist spinner for the first time in more than a decade. Boland will be dropped from the team that was beaten by three wickets in Leeds. The tourists, on the other hand, have yet to announce their playing XI for the forthcoming Test match.

However, in addition to confirming Hazlewood's comeback, Pat Cummins revealed on Tuesday (July 18) that their top five would not change and that they would not be playing young spinner Todd Murphy. 

Meanwhile, there raises the prospect of Cameron Green, who missed the Leeds Test owing to a hamstring injury. Mitchell Marsh, his replacement, validated his inclusion by smashing a spectacular century at Headingley, leaving selectors wondering how both all-rounders may be included in the lineup.

The reason was probably to set me up for the last two games: Hazlewood

While talking about getting dropped from the third Ashes Tests, Josh Hazlewood stated that Australia wanted him to be fit for the last two games. The 32-year-old feels that he is now in a better position and can help Australia retain the prestigious urn. 

"The reason was probably to set me up for the last two games. I know they're back-to-back but we haven't bowled a lot of overs. Hopefully with that work behind me now, I'm in a better position," Hazlewood said during the press conference.

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