Forced into an introspection mode after the Ashes debacle, Australia coach Tim Nielsen conceded he misread the pitch at The Oval and omitting off-spinner Nathan Hauritz was a mistake.
“I take a lot of (the responsibility), I feel as though maybe there are things I could’ve done,” Nielsen said.
“The biggest thing — and maybe that is one thing I would change — I believe I misread the wicket. I didn’t think it would spin as much as it did from the first day. I thought it was going to be dry,” he was quoted as saying by The Age.
“We felt it was going to be a good batting wicket for the first two or three days...In no way, shape or form did we see it being as dry and breaking up and spinning as quickly as it did. We thought it might spin later. But we’ve had success on turning wickets or slower wickets in the past with the balance that we took in,” said the Australian.
It was a pitch crying out for a spinner but Australia still ignored Hauritz only to see England offie Graeme Swann thriving on the track while Australian part-timer Marcus North grabbed for second innings wickets.
Nielsen did not sound convinced of Hauritz’s craft as the coach stressed on having spinners who would be automatic choice.
“I think we’ve shown by our selections and by the way we’ve tried players that, yeah, we would love to have a spinner who is a natural pick. And maybe that is something we will consider and keep talking about,” he added.