The Roar
The Roar


Why can't South Australia produce quality batsmen?

(AAP Image/Dale Cumming)
Roar Pro
17th November, 2015

For how much longer are scribes, such as Richard Earle and Andrew Capel, going to continue to ‘gild the lily’ concerning the performances of the South Australia Redbacks?

The facts are as follows. They fell into the Matador Cup final as a result of some poor captaincy from Victoria in not elevating Glenn Maxwell up the order when the game was there for the taking by Victoria.

The flogging received by the Redbacks from New South Wales in the final was only equalled by the thrashing they received in the first Shield match, against the same opposition.

Captain Travis Head stated “we are building a new resilient culture under coach Jamie Siddons but remain a work in progress”. Never a truer word spoken!

Despite Head making his first first-class century against Western Australia (114) – after 35 matches and 64 innings – in chasing down the 315 required to defeat WA, it was yet another familiar collapse from 5/269 to 9/308. It required Joe Mennie and Chadd Sayers to score the final 7 runs required for victory.

This is hardly a convincing victory.

The reality for the Redbacks is that while the bowling performances have been acceptable, the batting is woeful. The top order has delivered starts of 3/3 (NSW), 6/128 (WA) and 6/55 (Queensland).

Why is it that SA seems unable to produce successful young first-class batsmen?

Victoria’s 23 year-old Travis Dean scored a century in both innings of his Shield debut against Queensland at the MCG. Queensland’s Sam Heazlett (20 years-old) made a century on debut against Tasmania and now Matt Renshaw (19 years-old) made 94 run out and Marnus Labuschagne (21 yo) made 112, which set Queensland up for victory against SA.


Head, who is 21-years-old, took 35 matches to score his first century, and where are our other young up and coming potential champions?

Much heralded Kelvin Smith has scored 103 runs in 3 matches this season at an average of 17. Smith, in his 10 matches for the Redbacks, averages 23.8.

Selectors, please note Alex Keath’s 144 for Prospect. He’s an Adelaide Crows’ category B rookie and comes from interstate, so he must be in with a chance.