Go with experience for the Ashes, not youth
Australian bowler Cameron White trains undercover at the MCG. AAP Image/Luis Enrique Ascui
With the senior Hussey (Michael) no longer in the Test side after bowing out after Sydney, it leaves Australia’s middle order crippled, vulnerable and very inexperienced.
Both Ricky Ponting and Hussey had 247 Tests between them. And now with both retired, the only player/s in the middle order who has played more than 20 Tests from number three down are Michael Clarke and Shane Watson (when fit).
Clarke and Watson are the two batsman in Australia’s top seven that have descent records in England with Clarke scoring 448 runs at 64 in the 2009 series and Watson 240 runs at 48 (in three Tests).
Phil Hughes is the other batsman to have played in England and his record is a miserable 97 runs at 16 (two Tests).
If Australia is to have any chance in the upcoming series, it cannot afford to bring in another rookie who has played only a handful of first-class matches and has never played in England.
Usman Khawaja looks the likely replacement for Hussey for the Indian tour but he has only played one season in for Derbyshire in county cricket.
One player who must be considered or given a spot for the first Test at Trent Bridge is David Hussey. Although Hussey is yet to play a Test for Australia, he plays for Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club and has had many prolific years, scoring over 1000 runs in on three occasions for three seasons including a high score of 275.
Though Hussey has only played in two of the last four seasons, his record suggests he is the perfect batsman for the swing and seaming conditions of England.
Another option could be Hussey’s Victorian teammate Cameron White. Since 2005, White has played for Somerset and he has a good record in county cricket.
He also scored 228 runs at 57 for the Nottinghamshire Steelbacks in the Friend Life T20 competition in 2012 and should be considered despite the fact he has not played a Test for Australia since 2008 and has not scored an ODI or T20 half-century since 2010.
Even Chris Rogers, who averages over 50 and has scored over 15,000 first-class runs with a high score of 319 playing for Northamptonshire, is an option.
Whatever the selectors do, come the Ashes, they must select one of these players or even consider them to give Australia the best chance.
I believe David Hussey should be given a chance straight away, even in India.
If the selectors don’t go for an experienced county cricket campaigner for that first Test, it will leave Australia’s middle order very, very vulnerable and the likes of James Anderson, Stuart Broad and Chris Tremlett will be licking their lips.