Saturday, November 7, 2009

'Australia won't be able to fill Warne void'

Melbourne: The void created by the retirement of spin legend Shane Warne can never be filled in the Australian team, feels chief selector Andrew Hilditch.

Hilditch, who was recently reappointed Australia's chief selector until the 2011 World Cup, created quite a stir here by trying at least seven spinners since Warne retired after the Ashes series in 2006-2007.

"The reality is when we lost Warne, it couldn't have come at a worse time. Moving forward I think we have made a lot of progress. We will never replace Warne, that is a non-existent possibility. There is always going to be a hole and to some extent we've got to stop talking about it," Hilditch said.

Australia have tried Stuart MacGill, Beau Casson, Cameron White, Jason Krejza, Brad Hogg, Nathan Hauritz and Bryce McGain in the last few years but are yet to find a permanent replacement for Warne.

Hilditch said he was happy with Hauritz's performance and feels the off-spinner has the calibre to go far.

"Hauritz has made really good progress. We are really happy with how he is going. We think we have found someone who can play a role for us in international cricket, so that's great," Hilditch was quoted as saying in Herald Sun.

"I am feeling a lot better about spin than if you had asked me 12 months ago when we were really looking at stop-gap measures to rebuild our spin stocks," he said.

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