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Australia coach McDonald feels shifting batting order may help in accommodating Green in Tests

IANS | November 29, 2023 04:47 PM

MELBOURNE: Australia head coach Andrew McDonald believes fast-bowling all-rounder Cameron Green can be accommodated in the Test team by seeing a shuffle in the batting order by being one of the best six batters in the team. Green last played a Test match during the Ashes at Manchester in July this year, following which Mitchell Marsh was preferred.

After coming home post playing three matches in Australia’s ODI World Cup triumph in India, Green will be pushing for a spot in the Test side by playing in Western Australia's ongoing Sheffield Shield match against Queensland at the Gabba and in the Prime Minister's XI four-day game against a visiting Pakistan team in Canberra.

“What does Cam Green’s future look like in the Test team? Is it a matter of waiting for Mitch to finish or could there be another spot that opens up over time? He has batted at six for most of his Test cricket, but he has been a fantastic number four for WA and averages close to 50 in Shield cricket.”

“There is always the idea that you can potentially shift the order to make room to put your best six batters, or what you see as best six batters, in a certain order, ” said McDonald on SEN Radio.

He also cited examples of middle-order batters shifting into an opening role successfully for Australia in Test cricket. “We have seen that in Australian cricket before. David Boon went from three to opening.”

“Justin Langer went from three to opening. Shane Watson went from six to opening. There has been the ability to reshuffle and for that to be successful. But we will leave that to the first Test match in Perth, ” added McDonald.

Australia will be announcing its squad for the three-Test series against Pakistan later this week, with the first Test starting at the Optus Stadium in Perth from December 14-18, and to be played on a drop-in pitch for kickstarting the men’s international home summer.

The wicket square consists of five drop-in pitches, with each one weighing around 25 tonnes and the entire installation process taking more than two days. The drop-in wicket has been curated at the stadium since February, tended to daily by WA Cricket curators in the nursery located next to the outdoor practice wickets on the northern side of the stadium.

The drop-in wicket contains the same local clay and grass species as the pitches at the WACA Ground and is closely monitored during its growth to replicate the Ground’s fast and bouncy nature. Last week, the drop-in wicket was moved by a 30-meter-long, 40-tonne cricket wicket transporter onto the stadium playing surface, with the machine being the only one of its kind in Western Australia.

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