Aaron Finch and Mitchell Marsh are both set to be dumped from the Australian team for the Sydney Test against India, with Peter Handscomb and Marnus Labuschagne the expected replacements.
The Australian team trail 2-1 in the series after losing in Melbourne during the Boxing Day Test and have no chance of regaining the Border-Gavaskar trophy, but can still tie things up.
Finch has struggled throughout the series at the top of the order for Australia, scoring just 97 runs at 16.16 and after falling out of favour, it’s little surprise he won’t be lining up to face the first ball at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
His selection to open was a controversial one in the first place, given the besieged Victorian has normally lined up in the middle order at Sheffield Shield level for the Bushrangers.
Labuschagne is likely to bat at number six in his place, with Usman Khawaja the man promoted to the top of the order.
Should reports from the team’s final training session be true and Finch is replaced in the side, he is likely to be joined on the sidelines for the final Test of what has been an enthralling series by Mitchell Marsh.
Marsh came in for the Boxing Day Test, replacing Peter Handscomb in the middle order to provide Australia with more bowling options.
However, with the Sydney pitch likely to take spin, Labuschagne will fill that role. On top of that, the Australian camp rate Peter Handscomb a better player of spin and given India have dropped Ishant Sharma, it’s hardly a surprise to think this change will happen.
Still, Australia won’t make the final call on Handscomb and Marsh until they look at the pitch tomorrow morning.
It’s unclear at this stage whether Finch will be released to join the Melbourne Renegades in their BBL campaign tomorrow night, with the Melbourne side set to play the Adelaide Strikers in Geelong.
Marsh would be expected to be back in Perth colours against the Brisbane Heat on Saturday night.