IPL 2021: Former CSK star Shane Watson impressed with Josh Hazlewood, picks him as key bowler for CSK vs KKR final

Former Australia all-rounder and CSK star Shane Watson has put focus on the fact that how Chennai Super Kings (CSK) pacer Josh Hazlewood has been able to take advantage of the conditions on offer when there is a little bit of dew and has backed him to perform well in the CSKvKKR IPL 2021 final, set to be played between CSK and KKR on Friday. Watson even drew a comparison between Hazlewood and former Australia bowler Glenn McGrath ahead of the big clash.

Watson explained how Hazlewood uses his finger for a better grip on a relatively wet ball when there is dew. “For me, the thing that I have loved about Josh Hazelwood is the control that he has of the ball coming out of his fingers, and that’s along the lines of what Glenn McGrath did. The control that he (McGrath) has on how much the ball swings or which way the ball seams, Josh had that even from a young age, so that for me was one of the comparisons,” Watson said on Star Sports’ live feed of Select Dugout.

The Australian all-rounder who played a crucial role in CSK’s 2018 title win went on to say that Hazlewood possesses the same ability as McGrath.

“Yes, Glenn McGrath, his accuracy, time and time again his ability to keep doing it again is something that not many fast bowlers ever had, but that’s one of the similarities for me with Josh Hazelwood. Just his control over the ball coming out of his hand, that’s why when there’s a little bit dew in the wicket or with the brand new ball, he’s incredibly good with just being able to get something out of the wicket.

“Just with enough variation or enough little something out of the wicket or something in the air, which means he’s very hard to play in these conditions too,” he added.

Talking about Hazlewood’s performance so far in IPL 2021, he has taken nine wickets in eight games and is the key cog in the bowling wheel of CSK, especially in the second leg. MS Dhoni has wisely used the Australian pacer upfront, in the powerplay, allowing him to play to his strengths.