Cricket / Shane Warne picks his Australia XI for the pink ball Test vs India

Zoom News : Dec 14, 2020, 07:47 AM
Cricket Desk: Former Australia leg-spinner Shane Warne has picked his country's playing XI for the first Test match against India. Shane Warne went with Matthew Wade and Marcus Harris as his openers for the first game.

Australia has had multiple setbacks in the last few weeks when it comes to openers. David Warner injured his adductor muscle in the ODI series against India. He announced his unavailability for the first Test soon after.

Warner's replacement Will Pucovski sustained a concussion while batting for Australia A in the first tour match against India last week. Pucovski is recovering well but will also miss out on the first game. Thus, Marcus Harris was roped into the squad.

The other opener Joe Burns has been in dismal form the whole season. This has allowed Wade some spotlight in the series. Before Shane Warne, former Australia captain Michael Clarke had also picked Wade as his opener in a call that surprised some and intrigued many.

Wade has never opened in Test matches and his favorite batting spots are No. 5 and No. 6, where he averages 45.5 and 29 respectively. On the other hand, Harris averaged 36 in his debut Test series against India in 2018 and had a good Shelfied Shield stint recently.

Shane Warne picks Cameron Green in the squad

Shane Warne picked the indubitable middle-order of Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith and Travis Head.

Warne also included precocious all-rounder Cameron Green in his side after Head. However, Green was also concussed in the second warm-up game against India and is an uncertain starter for the match.

Warne hoped for his quick recovery and chose Shaun Marsh as a substitution if the need arose.

Marsh averages 34.32 in 38 Test matches and is a dependable batsman. However, this average shoots down to 22.4 against India which is his least against any opponent (at least 3 games).

Captain and wicketkeeper Tim Paine came next in Shane Warne's XI. Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Josh Hazelwood, and Nathan Lyon followed suit as the bowlers.

The pink-ball Test match, India's first overseas, will begin from December 17 in Adelaide. It will be followed by three more matches in Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane.

Shane Warne's XI: Matthew Wade, Marcus Harris, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Cameron Green, Tim Paine (c), Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood.