Having not got to the crease in the first Test against the West Indies, Cameron Green welcomed a rigorous net session at the Adelaide Oval on Wednesday.
He might’ve ended up with a little more than he bargained for.
Lance Morris, the man who recorded a 153km/h ball during the Sheffield Shield last summer and once snapped Shaun Marsh’s bat in half during the BBL, was waiting for him up the other end, pink Kookaburra in hand.
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And while it’s unlikely any ball to the right-hander was over 150km/h on Wednesday, Morris was certainly quick enough to pose his WA teammate some genuine problems.
Morris strode in from behind the ivy-laden walls of the Adelaide Oval members’ stand, where he was eager to make an impression on the Cricket Australia hierarchy, having just earnt his first national call-up.
It was Scott Boland who was, as expected, given the nod to replace the injured Pat Cummins – but this was still a golden opportunity for the 24-year-old quick from Western Australia, nicknamed the ‘Wild Thing’.
His run-up to Green appeared somewhere close to full length, and his intensity shy of his maximum – a conservative estimate would have had him bowling at around 85 to 90 per cent.
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Then, after a little warm-up, came the thunderbolts.
The second ball delivered to Green saw the Test all-rounder unsure of his footwork and playing a timid drive he edged to the would-be slips cordon.
Morris’ next came in a similar spot and Green only just whipped his bat away in time.
But the examination continued. Within the first 10 balls Morris bowled to Green, another delivery cut in awkwardly and hit the batter on the thigh pad, one beat his outside edge by a mere centimetre, while another was edged towards the gully region.
From the vantage point of behind Green, where you have the safety of two nets and another steel fence, the ball still whipped into the protection with a startling ferocity.
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Batting in the net next to Green was Steve Smith, who was asked if he wanted any bowlers, or if he was happy just facing throwdowns for the afternoon.
He went for the latter option.
Morris certainly won the battle against Green, and he did so with speed being his primary weapon.
While this was a dress rehearsal of sorts for the second Test, it’s worth noting that there were no short deliveries. Green could be pretty confident of the length of each ball, and yet, he still looked notably shaky to Morris, especially compared to Michael Neser who was also in his net.
It’s unlikely that Morris earns himself a baggy green anytime soon, but he would’ve walked away from the Adelaide Oval nets on Wednesday knowing he did his future prospects no harm.
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West Australian teammate Hilton Cartwright told foxsports.com.au this week that Morris is the fastest bowler in the country, while Aaron Hardie believes he has what it takes to take the step up from the Sheffield Shield.
“It’s scary to think what he could do (with the pink Kookaburra) … I think he’s going to dominate if he gets a chance,” Hardie said.