I have a lot to offer the team, says McGrath

Published: Sunday, October 29, 2006, 23:53 [IST]
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Sydney:Glenn McGrath says he may be getting towards the end of his cricket career but he still has a lot to offer the Australian team for next month's Ashes series against England.

Test cricket's greatest wicket-taking paceman may be turning 37 next February, but he has hit out at his detractors who are questioning his form after coming back from eight months out of the game to care for his ill wife.

McGrath has been relegated to first-change bowler behind Brett Lee and Nathan Bracken in the One-day team for the Champions' Trophy in India and he has yet to find the rhythm and incisiveness that has long been his calling card.

McGrath, who has taken 542 wickets in 119 Tests with 136 of those wickets coming against England, Sunday fired back at his critics, particularly former Australian Test players and now cricket commentators Ian Chappell, Jeff Thomson and Geoff Lawson.

"The same people seem to question my form leading into the start of every season," McGrath wrote in his column in The Sunday Telegraph newspaper.

"They question my place in the team and whether I will see out the year. If they keep saying it year after year, I guess the chances are they will eventually be proved right.

"I've been around long enough to know that every year is different and you don't have be a rocket scientist to work out that if you don't perform in this team, you get replaced.

"We have a lot of good young bowlers coming through in Australian cricket and the time will come when I won't be around or have to make way for someone like Mitchell Johnson.

"Obviously, I'm getting closer to the end of my career than the start, but I still feel I have a lot to offer the team. I still feel that I can contribute.

"Guys like (New Zealand's) Richard Hadlee and (West Indies') Courtney Walsh bowled until they were 38 or 39 and were continuing to produce.

"But the older you get, the more people point out that every series could be your last. I've never thought that way."


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