London: Australia pacer Ryan Harris could have been playing the Lord's Test wearing England's famous three lions on his chest but signed a multi-year contract with Queensland instead of playing in the country.
Harris's father was born in Leicester and five years ago, Sydney-born Harris had a short county stint for Sussex and played at Lord's and took four for 36 against MCC. He had to decide whether to continue playing in England as a local or take up Queensland's multi-year deal and play for Australia.
"Last time I was in this building (the ECB's offices at Lord's) I had a passport meeting with Mike Gatting. It was a messy situation. I had contemplated coming over here but then I had a very good offer from Queensland that came though at the time," Harris was quoted as saying by Sydney Morning Herald.
"I thought I might have one last crack to play for Australia. The thought was there but I wanted to play for Australia and that move to Queensland was the best crack at it."
The 33-year-old seamer has been in and out of the Australian team due to injuries. He got back from a shoulder surgery to start off the domestic season for Queensland and overcame an Achilles problem picked up during the Indian Premier League (IPL) in time to be included for the Ashes.
"I've got constant niggles which any fast bowler has so it's just a matter of managing that. My goal on this tour is to be on the plane home with the rest of the guys instead of going home early," Harris said.
In his comeback Test, Harris led the Australian attack with Peter Siddle and James Pattinson. Harris picked up three important wickets Thursday, removing Joe Root, Kevin Pietersen and the dangerous Jonathan Trott.
Harris ended the first innings of the second Test with figures of five for 72.