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Skies will shape second Test: Aussies

AAP logoAAP 10/11/2016 Rob Forsaith

Cloud cover will determine whether Bellerive proves to be a batsman's paradise, as it was in last year's Test, or the bowler-dominated beast that has subdued plenty of mainlanders in recent Sheffield Shield seasons.

That is the opinion of both Callum Ferguson and Josh Hazlewood ahead of the second chapter of Australia's three-Test series against South Africa, which starts in Hobart on Saturday.

Ferguson, who is in line to make his Test debut should selectors opt to beef up their batting order by dropping Mitch Marsh or Nathan Lyon, knows the two-faced venue well.

The South Australia batsman posted a career-best knock of 213 during a Sheffield Shield match in Hobart a year ago.

"It will be interesting. A lot of it depends on how much sunshine it gets throughout a four-day game from what I've seen over the journey," Ferguson said.

"It's certainly a wicket that once you get set on you can score quite quickly because the outfield is quick.

"It would tend to have a bit of juice in it early so you've got some hard work ahead of you. If it does sit under covers for a bit there might be some tricky periods at the start of each innings for the batting side."

Days one and two of the second Test are expected to be impacted by wet weather, with 15 to 30mm of rain predicted on both Saturday and Sunday.

Hazlewood was unsure how much assistance the pitch would offer but was licking his lips at the prospect of overcast conditions.

"I think it depends on the skies more than the wicket," Hazlewood said.

"If it is overcast and rainy the ball can swing around a bit, if there is some grass on the surface.

"And vice versa, if the sun's out I think it's a great batting track and plays pretty well ... it does flatten out pretty quickly."

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