Hauritz happy to do his bit
Australia off-spinner Nathan Hauritz is revelling in his role as unsung hero - and insists he will be content to avoid the headlines if he features in the decisive final Ashes Test.
The 27-year-old was dropped for Australia’s innings victory in the fourth Test at Headingley Carnegie, when the decision to play four seamers paid off handsomely.
Hauritz, who took 2-43 as the tourists beat England Lions by 103 runs at Canterbury today, may have a stronger case for selection at the Brit Oval - the venue for the fifth Test starting on Thursday - given the success of spinners down the years.
He took 10 wickets at 32 apiece in the first three Tests, and is confident he can continue in the same fashion should he win a recall this week as England chase the win they need to regain the Ashes.
"My main goal was to play one Test then to take it from there," he said. "To do a steady job with nothing outstanding has been good and I've been happy to play a role.
"Every Test you play you learn more about yourself and what you can or can't do.
"Before I came out I was labelled a defensive bowler who didn't spin the ball. But I think I've shown on a spinning wicket what I can do.
“That defensive tag was weird but I can't change people's perception. I suppose that came about because I didn't spin it that much when I first started.
"It doesn't really faze me. I can also play a role even if it's not spinning. I think I've done okay.”
Stuart Clark’s place in the Australia side appears the most vulnerable, but the tourists - as they did in Leeds - will make a judgement on conditions before naming their side.
Hauritz added: "Selection will come down to how the wicket is and what they think the best mix is.
"It will just come down to how the conditions are. The wicket may still be dry and they might want to take four quicks. If picked, I know I'll do my role well. Every time I've had the opportunity I've done that.”
Hauritz believes the momentum in the series shifted towards Australia during the drawn third Test at Edgbaston.
Michael Clarke and Marcus North batted for much of the final day to snuff out England’s hopes of a victory which would have given them an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series.
Hauritz believes the performance also restored the Australia bowlers' self-belief just days before they bowled England out for 102 at Headingley.
"The mood started to change at Edgbaston," said Hauritz. "The mood wasn't dark before Edgbaston but after then the bowlers had more belief in what they were doing.
"The way our quicks bowled - with more purpose and aggression - showed they were starting to click and get back to where they were in South Africa.
"We felt when Michael and Marcus batted out that last day that it was a turning point.
"Then we went to Headingley and got them out for 102 in the first innings. It's a funny game because things turn so quickly."