Former Australian opener Matthew Hayden has recently revealed the toughest bowler that he faced throughout his illustrious career spanning over fifteen years with Australia. Hayden also named the best batsmen of his era while speaking to International Business Times, on Thursday (21 June).
According to Hayden, West Indian legend Curtly Ambrose and Indian off-spinner Harbhajan Singh were the "toughest" bowlers who were tough to hit for him in his career with Australia.
The 46-year-old said, “My toughest bowler was (pause for a while) probably Curtly Ambrose. He was a magnificent bowler, fast, accurate and relentless from ball one. He gave you nothing to hit. He bowled one line, one length. Among Indian players, I have had wonderful battles with Harbhajan (Singh). He did solid, emotional battles. So, those two players (Ambrose and Harbhajan) were tough.”
Hayden selected Australia’s Ricky Ponting and West Indian batting great Brian Lara as the best batsman that he played with and against when it comes to power hitting batting. He added, “The best batsman I played with was Ricky Ponting. And against, it was Brian Lara, for obvious reasons.”
He also commented on the disgraced Steve Smith and David Warner, “They (Smith and Warner) will bounce back. The great thing about Australian public is that they are extremely forgiving. They are also harsh critics of poor behavior in sport. The sport in Australia is revered. For a population of 25 million, it is one thing we do well across multiple codes, including the Olympics, Commonwealth Games, etc.”
Though, he admitted that the duo was wrong in what they did but said thay the punishment subjected to them for the offence was too harsh.
Hayden signed off by saying, “It is very proud sporting culture and when its members, not just Steven (Smith) and David (Warner), when they let the game down, we don't like it and dealt with accordingly. Their punishments were incredibly harsh, too harsh I feel. Having said that, they have done the wrong thing and they have to do their time. Australian cricket and the public will accept that Steven and David come back into the set-up.”