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Cummins backs Bird to fill Hazlewood void

195   //    29 Aug 2017, 20:09 IST
joshhazlewood - cropped
Australia seamer Josh Hazlewood

Australia's fast bowling options were dealt a further blow on Tuesday following a side-strain injury to Josh Hazlewood, but Pat Cummins is confident Jackson Bird is ready to step in.

Hazlewood left the field after bowling the first ball of his second over on day three of the first Test against Bangladesh and has been ruled out of the rest of the series.

In his absence, Australia dismissed their hosts for 221 in the second innings and reached stumps at 109-2, just 156 runs away from a rare victory in Asia.

However, Hazlewood's departure means Steve Smith's side now have a big problem with the Ashes only a few months away, the seamer joining Mitchell Starc (foot) and James Pattinson (back) on the sidelines.

Cummins is not worried, though, and says Bird is primed to fill the void in Australia's bowling attack.

"He [Hazlewood] is going to be really hard to replace," said Cummins. "He's played all but one of the last 30 tests.

"He said it is going to be pretty hard sitting at home watching. He hasn't done that for three or four years. So he's a big member around the group.

"I am going to miss having dinner with him every night, but we have got Jackson Bird waiting in the wings, which is great.

"He [Bird] has been bowling beautifully. He's had some great performances in the past. 

"It's not great about Joshy but we're lucky that we've got such a strong squad over here."

Bird has eight Test caps to his name since making his debut in 2012 against Sri Lanka, the last of which came in December last year.

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