What is it about England and the Ashes at the Gabba? The chaotic clatter of wickets after winning the toss on a green top conjured the nightmares of the ghosts from the past for the tourists.
The Australian limited overs team had a forgettable 2017. They lost 4-1 to India and also failed to make the Champions Trophy knockouts.
The Australian team did not begin 2018 on a positive note either, losing 4-1 to England at home.
The team since 2017 has a win-loss record even poorer than Bangladesh as they have won only six out of their last 20 games.
The Australian batting order the last year or so has failed to stay relevant in the limited overs format. Captain Steven Smith – is arguably the best Test player in world cricket at the moment – isn’t the same force in the shorter format.
David Warner has been inconsistent and the Aussie middle order has been chopped and changed numerous times to have any sort of continuity.
With the World Cup 2019 just over a year away it is nice to see the selectors have started experimenting with the limited overs squad. The selection of successful players from the recently concluded BBL was the master stroke.
D’Arcy Short, Alex Carey, Chris Lynn along with Aaron Finch and David Warner makes an explosive batting line up.
The biggest gain for Australia though has been the return of Glenn Maxwell. His presence in the middle order means that the Aussies will get the much required push lower down the order which they so missed in the home series against England.
Mitchell Marsh and Marcus Stoinis also add to the exciting group of players the Australian limited overs team possess at the moment. The team management now have to make sure that they rotate the players wisely to identify the right combination for the World Cup.
Even though the top three for the ODI format looks settled with Aaron Finch, David Warner and Steve Smith, I would like to see Short in the mix to change it up a little bit.
Probably one of Warner or Finch can drop down to number three to allow Short to open the batting? It might be something worth trying.
Travis Head is another fantastic player who probably would play in the middle order as well.
Steven Smith at number four and Travis Head at five followed by Glen Maxwell at six will give Australia a fantastic middle order.
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Mitchell Marsh and Marcus Stoinis will also be in the running for the top six spot in ODIs. Chris Lynn also will be in the mix but he has been really inconsistent at the international level.
Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc will be the three first choice pacers but Andrew Tye and Billy Stanlake will also be in the mix for the shorter formats.
Adam Zampa and Ashton Agar will probably be the first choice spinners in the limited overs format. Cameron Boyce who bowled brilliantly in this year’s BBL also is an option for the ODIs.
Australia now have amazing bunch of players to pick from and are currently spoilt for riches.
The team management now will need to make the call as to what their most effective XI will be for the world cup.
The good thing is that they do not need to make the call right now and have more than a year to figure out the right combination.
The selectors have made the right calls finally and core for the future Australian limited overs side has been formed.
Australia in a matter of couple of months have gone from a team completely out of depth to a team with a genuine chance to defend their title in England.
The below players will form the core of Australia limited overs side for the next year and a half. The majority of them for sure will be on the plane to England for the 2019 World Cup.
Squad: David Warner, Aaron Finch, Steven Smith (C), Travis Head, D’Arcy Short, Alex Carey (WK), Glenn Maxwell, Mitchell Marsh, Marcus Stoinis, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Andrew Tye, Adam Zampa, Ashton Agar, Chris Lynn.