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The Roar


The Australian cricket selectors are back to their ridiculous ways

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Roar Rookie
11th September, 2019
1212 Reads

Last week the Australian cricket selectors were praised for making the tough decisions that inevitably helped the side retain the Ashes on enemy soil.

But now it seems they are back to their old nonsensical ways, leaving cricket fans across the nation completely perplexed by their decisions.

Mitchell Marsh, who is one of only two players in the touring party to not feature in any Test of this Ashes series, has been shockingly recalled, taking the place of vice-captain Travis Head.

Marsh averages just 25 with the bat and 44 with the ball in Test cricket, with his scores in the last ten Test match innings reading 10, 9, 5, 13, 0, 12, 0, 4, 16 and 5.

His last ten Test match bowling performances do not make great reading either, with 26 overs 0 for 51, 13 overs 1 for 39, 7 overs 1 for 21, 10 overs 0 for 38, 8 overs 0 for 40, 6 overs 0 for 30, 5 overs 0 for 26, 7 overs 1 for 26 and two DNB (did not bowl).

I understand that Head and Marsh are two different players, and that the life of an all-rounder is incredibly hard, with two responsibilities it is certainly not the easiest job in cricket.

Mitch Marsh of Australia

Is Mitch Marsh worth a gamble? (AAP Image/David Mariuz)

Nonetheless, Head’s statistics read like those of somebody that should almost be impossible to drop.

He has a career average of 43 and has the third highest Test runs tally in the entire world for 2019 with 515, behind Ben Stokes, 540, and Steve Smith, 671. This is an impressive feat considering it came in two fewer innings than Stokes.


Head’s last four innings of this series have admittedly been low scores, but his performances before that are exceptional with scores of 42*, 7, 51, 35, 59*, 161 and 84.

As a young, vice-captain of the Australian cricket team, who has played reasonably this series and helped Australia hold on for a draw in the second Test with a gutsy match-saving innings, Head should not have been on the chopping block.

In an interview with Cricket Australia, captain Tim Paine made it obvious that Marsh was only replacing head due to the conditions, allowing for an extra bowler towards the end of a tiring series.

However, with up and coming bowling all-rounder Michael Neser waiting on the sideline, surely it is time for Cricket Australia to try something new.

Neser has a healthy bowling average in first class cricket at 27, as well as a batting average of the same number.


What Neser also adds to the team is the ability to move the ball. As a bowling all-rounder his capability of swinging and seaming the duke ball would be perfect for English conditions, something that has failed to sway selectors.

Head should not be the player to make room for Marsh, and Marsh should not be the all-rounder picked to aid our bowling attack.

The Ashes have been retained, and with the selectors opting for change in this final Test, it seems they have reverted back to their decisions of old.

Unfortunately, this is something that just might halt the Australian victory celebrations.