Oram fires back at McMillan
Written by Hemant
Wednesday, 17 December 2008
Jacob Oram has countered accusations he shies away from playing through the pain barrier after his withdrawal from New Zealand's current Test series against the West Indies.
New Zealand's premier allrounder was ruled out of the second Test which starts at McLean Park in Napier on Friday with a calf injury - meaning he will miss a fifth consecutive Test after breaking down with a back injury in Bangladesh two months ago.
The 30-year-old missed the subsequent 0-2 series loss in Australia and had hoped to come back against the West Indies in Dunedin last week until he reported his latest leg injury 48 hours before the toss.
It is now hoped the hard-hitting batsman and medium pace change bowler will be fit for the first of two Twenty20 internationals in Auckland on Boxing Day.
Oram has remained with the squad as he undergoes rehabilitation.
He had little involvement on Wednesday at practice, hours after former international Craig McMillan questioned his commitment on radio.
McMillan, who retired last year, criticised Oram's absence from the Test series suggesting he had been "wrapped in cotton wool" by the previous - and current - coaching regime.
"You've always got sore calfs, hammys (hamstrings) but you just get on and do it," McMillan told Radio Sport.
"Unfortunately with Jake's track record .... he has missed some games that maybe he could have got through."
Oram bristled at those claims, saying he understood criticism from the public but not from a former colleague.
"I understand people who have never bowled a ball in anger in their lives having a bit of a go at me for potentially being on the soft side, but it's disappointing to come from an ex-teammate," Oram said.
"He knows the rigours and the stresses of international cricket and it's a bit rich saying if it's 50-50 I don't play."
Oram said he played a match against South Africa in last year's Twenty20 World Cup after breaking a finger in New Zealand's previous match.
He also played in discomfort at the one-day World Cup in March-April last year after breaking a finger and damaging ligaments shortly before the team left for the Caribbean.
Oram, who missed the March Test against England in Napier with a hip injury, acknowledged the fans' frustrations but reminded them: "If they're annoyed, I'm a hundred times worse."
He was also aware of suggestions he would play if the lucrative Indian Premier League Twenty20 competition was on now -- and not a Test series.
"If they're coming from a financial point of view, that's not correct," said Oram, who was acquired by the Chennai Super Kings franchise in February for a deal worth $US675,000 ($NZ1.18 million).
"If they're coming from a point of view that it's a five day match -- it's longer and harder physically, they're correct."
Oram said the physical exertions of Twenty20 cricket were simply not as demanding as test cricket.
In the shortest version of the game he has to bowl a maximum of four overs and bat for less than 20.
Oram said new coach Andy Moles, captain Daniel Vettori and medical staff have mapped out a programme for him to ideally be fit for the limited overs component of the West Indies tour and then India's visit in March-April.
Looking ahead, he said he would need to be carefully managed up to the 2011 World Cup in the sub-continent.
Oram said he did not enjoy missing Test matches but would not play at less than peak fitness.
"I'm sick and tired of missing Yest matches but the one thing I dislike more is having to walk off the field on day one or four .... the team plays with 10 and Dan is down a bowler."
Last Updated ( Sunday, 08 January 2012 )