Banned spinner gets Green light to keep dream alive
CHRIS Green has received an unexpected message of support from the Australian selectors in a clear sign his World Cup dream may not have been destroyed by his chucking ban.
The Sydney Thunder spinner admits he's never before had anyone raise doubts over his action during his entire cricketing career, but is refusing to feel any bitterness over his 90-day suspension from bowling.
Brendon McCullum has jumped into Green's corner as his coach at IPL franchise Kolkata Knight Riders, with the New Zealand great and Channel 7 commentator questioning why the off-spinner has to sit out such a long period of time.
But perhaps the most encouraging message that's flooded in from hundreds all over the world has been the one from a member of Australia's selection panel.
National selector Trevor Hohns told Green last year that he was on the radar for World Cup selection, and it would seem being rubbed out of bowling for the rest of the BBL doesn't necessarily mean the end of his road for his international ambitions in the T20 format.
"My dream is to play for Australia. I've had some really great messages from selectors and players and coaches and fans," said Green, who has a better domestic record than incumbent Australian T20 spinner Ashton Agar.
"Hearing those words of support has really helped me at this time.
"There's so much to look forward to. It's a 90-day training block, if you like, that I can fine-tune my game.
"I've had a busy 12 months prior to this where I haven't had the time to stop and work on technical aspects of my game, so I see this as a really good window to work on my game and make the changes necessary on my bowling."
Green refused to bite back at Melbourne Renegades rival Dan Christian - who has been accused of tweeting out a below-the-belt sledge of the Thunder star over his action earlier this summer - and also refused to make excuses, despite his ban coming out of the blue.
"It's not a time to be bitter about it. Everything happens for a reason. Perspective is incredibly powerful and I think the changes that I'm looking to make on behalf of my bowling are going to add value to my game in the long run," he said.
Green's ban will push right up on the IPL starting in March, which would likely be his best avenue for pushing his case for national selection.
The BBL throwing ban is hardly ideal for his reputation as a bold T20 freelancer, but the biggest market of all is standing by Green - in the shape of the Kolkata coach, McCullum.
McCullum revealed on Big Bash commentary that he was looking to get Green on a plane to Chennai, where there is an ICC testing centre, as soon as possible.
"We will look to try and help Chris Green out wherever we can, 100 per cent," McCullum said on Channel 7.
"I don't quite understand the 90-day thing … ultimately you just want to help the kid back to playing cricket and doing what he loves doing."
Green thanked McCullum and other coaches who have made him feel he can make the "marginal" changes he needs to his suspect delivery - the fast ball - to get back on the field as soon as the 90 days is up.
"I've had some good conversations with Brendan McCullum … he's been incredibly supportive," he said.
"I've had conversations with their assistant coaches as well and they're willing to stand by me and help me through this. They've offered to take me out and work with their specialists and through the process as well.
"I've had contact with Sunil Narine's bowling coach as well and I plan on working with some of the best coaches around the world and in Australia on this to get myself sorted and to get back bigger and better."