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Role of spearhead has left me exhausted: Johnson


Sydney : In the absence of Brett Lee and Stuart Clarke, Mitchell Johnson has emerged as the spearhead of a depleted Australian bowling attack but the pacer admits his new role has left him “exhausted”.

For the third Test in Sydney Saturday, Johnson will lead the pace attack, despite the fact he made his debut last summer and has only 17 Tests under his belt.

While Johnson feels he has pulled up reasonably well, he also says he has never bowled more overs than he has in the past two back-to-back Tests.

“I’m pretty exhausted but we have a couple of days off now. I’ll put my feet up and ring in the New Year, see the fireworks. I’ll be right for the game on Saturday,” Johnson was quoted as saying in the Daily Telegraph.

Now that Lee and Clark have hobbled off, Johnson, must guide Peter Siddle (3 Tests), Nathan Hauritz (3), Andrew McDonald (0) and either Ben Hilfenhaus (0) or Doug Bollinger (0) onto the SCG and somehow rally them to find the 20 wickets, that has eluded Australia of late.

“I have to step up now to try to help the young blokes through the next period,” Johnson said. “I’m looking forward to the challenge. Peter Siddle’s done a terrific job and I’ve been very impressed with him,” Johnson said.

“You’ve got Ben Hilfenhaus or Doug Bollinger for the next bowling spot. They will give 100 per cent. They always have for the states, no doubt they will do that for their country. I’m excited.”