Let's bash the blues
NATHAN Hauritz has played cricket for New South Wales for the past five years.
The former Hervey Bay junior and now Sydneysider has plenty of mates who wear blue.
Those friendships will be put on hold for a few hours at the Sydney Cricket Ground tomorrow.
The Australian and New South Wales off-spinner will play against his usual teammates when he lines up for the Brisbane Heat in the inaugural Big Bash League Twenty20 showdown against the Sydney Sixers.
The 30-year-old Hauritz, who has played in 58 one-day internationals, 17 Tests and three Twenty20 games for Australia, said he was looking forward to rising to the challenge.
"You could say that it's a bit like State of Origin cricket style," Hauritz said.
"It really will be mate against mate, and I am really looking forward to playing against those I usually play with like Brad Haddin (the Sixers captain), Steve Smith and Shane Watson.
"I've crossed the border now and I am now focused on doing my best for a Queensland team."
When it comes to playing Twenty20 cricket, Hauritz has proved spinners can play a lethal role in the fast-paced version of the game.
In 20 games for the Blues, he has taken 20 wickets at an average of 19.40.
His economy rate is pretty impressive as well - 6.39 runs per over.
Saying that, Hauritz hasn't played a lot of cricket since he had arthroscopic surgery on his bowling shoulder after he dislocated it while fielding for Australia in a one-day international clash with England in February.
He played one game for NSW Blues in the Champions League in India in September, a one-dayer against Western Australia and a Sheffield Shield clash against Tasmania last week.
His shoulder got a good workout in the game against Tasmania.
Hauritz bowled 49 overs in the game, taking two wickets while doing it.
He said his shoulder pulled up well.
"It's a bit sore but that's only to be expected after such a long lay-off," he said.
"I am good to go though and I cannot wait to have a crack at the Sydney boys."