Aussie selectors have been accused of playing games with leaked team selection news just hours before the first ball of the Test series with India.
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Australia’s redemption mission to dust-up India on home soil is finally here.
The Aussies have had a disastrous build-up to the First Test in Adelaide, but start favourites on the back of the mighty Aussie attack wielding the pink ball under lights.
Mystery still surrounded the make-up of the Aussie XI just hours from the first delivery of the series with selectors continuing to play games at the eleventh hour.
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Selectors and captain Tim Paine were accused of playing “ducks and drakes” on Thursday morning after leaked reports under-pressure opener Joe Burns would keep his spot at the top of the order and will be partnered with Matt Wade, rather than Marcus Harris – who was called into the squad earlier this month.
Aussie Test greats Stuart Clark and Gavin Robertson both said Harris was the more obvious opening option on Wednesday morning.
Burns has averaged just six runs in his last nine first class knocks and was described as “mentally “shot” by Aussie legend Allan Border during the Australia A Tour match against India in Sydney.
However, the selection of Wade at the top of the order will allow for debutant Cameron Green to earn his Baggy Green cap.
“I’m going Marcus Harris. Who knows. They’re playing ducks and drakes,” Clark told Sky Sports Radio when asked who should open against India.
“I actually think Burns will get the gig. I know Langer’s come out and supported him. Australian cricket has come out and supported him. Dave Warner wanted to open with him at one stage. I don’t think it will be Tim Paine. He’s quite happy batting at No. 7.”
Robertson also told SEN radio he believed selectors were playing games to shield the selection of Harris.
“I actually thought Harris. I really did think he’ll go close. But for some reason Harris is always on the edge,” he said.
“He’s good enough, but do I think he’s grabbed it by the scruff of the neck? No I don’t.
“JL loves Matty Wade because he’s a lot like Justin. He’s tough. He’ll dig in and he can bat anywhere. It’s not an issue for him batting six or opening. He mentally just gets on with it. And Justin thinks he’ll be able to handle it.”
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Test debutant's hilarious welcome letter
For 26 long years Damien Fleming has worn the honour of being the only Australian cricketer to take a hat trick on Test debut – and he’s had enough.
The former swing bowler has written in jest of becoming tired of gathering solo with the “Australians with Hat-tricks on Test Debut Club” and is hoping Cameron Green can make it a party of two.
Fleming posted a letter to his social media platforms on the eve of today’s First Test between Australia and India that appears originally drafted for Moises Henriques when he first wore the baggy green in 2013 but has now been edited for the West Australian 21-year-old.
Expectations couldn’t be much higher on Green, who has been labelled Australia’s best young cricket talent since Ricky Ponting and a solution to a decade-long search for a quality all-rounder.
But Fleming has upped the stakes, calling on Green to go one better than Nathan Bracken, Pat Cummins and James Pattinson – who took two wickets in two balls on their debuts – and join the “AWHOTDC”.
Details on Fleming's hilarious note here
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