Mumbai: Mumbai Indians player Mitchell Johnson remembered former opener Matthew Hayden and said that his work ethics rubbed off against him in his early days with the Australian Test team.
Johnson said that it amused him when Hayden kept hitting one ball after the other in the nets after they went through a hard training session.
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“I remember Matthew Hayden, when I was playing for Queensland. We were in the net session for three hours. It was humid like Mumbai. (After the net session), I was stretching and I watched Hayden walk to the end (of) nets, which had a bowling machine, and hitting ball after ball.”
“It made me think ‘what is he (Hayden) doing. We just had a massive training session, (so) why is he hitting more balls.’ That did not make sense to me, (but) after some time it clicked that he plays for Australia. And I found out that he was doing extra running and extra training session as well.
Johnson, who finished his Test career with 313 wickets, said that watching Hayden practice like that opened his eyes to the fact that if he wants to play for the country, he must put in the extra effort. “That really opened my eyes and made me think, (if) I wanna (want to) play for Australia, you are going to do that extra stuff,” said Johnson.
He also praised the Indian fast bowlers, saying that there has been an unbelievable improvement in the physique of Indian fast bowlers. “I have noticed an improvement in physique of (Indian) fast bowlers in the last 2-4 years. It is unbelievable. The elite ones have amazing physique and they look good. It actually works because they are doing the right thing.”
The MI player has been promoting his ‘BowlFit app’ which has videos on how to ball slower balls, bouncers, yorkers etc. He said that all the techniques he has used in his career have been uploaded on the app, which has over 300 videos.
“All the stuff that is there (in the app), is the one I do, the stuff that I have done in my career. I had some knowledge. Over 300 videos are there in the app. A lot of stuff about how to bowl slower balls, bowling a swing ball, how to bowl a bouncer.
That was my favourite ball,” he said, adding that the videos are beneficial for learners between ages 14 to 20.