Hayden a 'pain in the bum': Neil Harvey

Published: Sunday, January 4, 2009, 11:44 [IST]
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 Oz great describes Hayden as a pain in the bum

Sydney: Out form Australian opener Mathew Hayden, who again failed to score in the third Test against South Africa at Sydney, has been described as “a pain in the bum".

Former Test great Neil Harvey joined a chorus calling for Hayden"s ouster, saying that the beleaguered Australian opener is “a pain in the bum".

Hayden compiled a subdued 31 on Saturday - scarcely a failure yet certainly not the resounding response needed to quieten critics who say his time at the top level is up, the Sydney Morning Herald reported.

Hayden was at the crease for over two and a half hours, facing 78 balls before his departure left the home side, already 2-0 down in the series, in trouble at 3-109.

"He is a pain in the bum. Hayden, at 37, what I think what he should do is head on down and say, 'I have had enough" and quit," Harvey said at a 50th anniversary reunion of the 1958-59 Australian side that regained the Ashes.

“I thought he was pathetic today. He wasn"t trying to score runs and he had forgotten how to hit the ball, and at his age he is not going to get any better, is he?

“He has been a good player, but he hasn"t been a great player in my opinion," Harvey added.

Hayden has struggled for runs since an Achilles injury sent him home from the West Indies tour in 2008.

In nine Tests since then - four in India, two at home against New Zealand and the current three-Test series against South Africa - he has made just 344 runs at less than 23.

His five innings against South Africa have yielded just 78 runs at less than 16.

Hayden is reportedly keen to play in the return series in South Africa and to make one final Ashes trip to England later this year, but has said he will reassess his position after the current Test match.

Hayden has experienced an extended form slump before, in 2004-05.

On that occasion he saved his career with a mighty 138 against England at The Oval, followed by three more tons which made him the third player next to Don Bradman and Ken Barrington to score four hundreds in a row twice.

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