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Opinion

Could Mitch Marsh's best years still be ahead?

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17th December, 2019
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Mitchell Marsh has represented Australia in all three formats on multiple occasions and has even been the vice-captain of the Test team.

However, his career has been full of controversy, as well as many a twist and turn.

Making his Western Australia debut at age 17, there were already suggestions his father, Geoff Marsh, and older brother, Shaun Marsh – both Australian representatives – were the reason he made his debut at such a young age.

These assumptions have followed Mitch all through his journey – even now, after he has played 32 Tests, 53 ODIs and 11 T20s for his country.

An all-rounder, Mitch’s batting peak was in the 2017 Ashes series in Australia. Brought into the squad from the third Test on, he scored 181, 9, 28* and 101.

Following that series, Mitch’s 2018 contained seven Tests – against South Africa, Pakistan and India – batting at average of 21.73 and bowling 58.50.

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Mitch was not selected for the 2019 ODI World Cup in the UK and instead participated in the Australia A tour of the UK, playing in four one-day matches against various county sides, scoring 126 runs without being dismissed. With the ball, he averaged 31.4.

Once the World Cup ended, Australia’s best Test cricketers competed in a three-day intra-squad match. In the first innings, Mitch got figures of 1-13 bowling and 29 runs batting. In the second innings, he took 5-34 and scored 23 runs.

As a result, he was picked in the fifth Test of the Ashes. His two knocks resulted in 17 and 24, but it was bowling that stood out, taking career-best numbers of 5-46 in the first innings and 2-40 in the second.

Yet this was the only time he has represented Australia in any of the three formats in 2019.

Mitchell Marsh celebrates taking a wicket

Mitchell Marsh celebrates taking a wicket. (Photo by Alex Davidson/Getty Images)

Domestically, Mitch became captain of both Western Australia and the Perth Scorchers BBL sides in 2017, although he has often missed games due to international duty.

However, in the 2018-19 BBL season, he played seven matches for a top score of 50* and an average of 24.4 with the bat.

Mitch has made played three One Day Cup games and one Sheffield Shield match in the 2019-20 season, batting at an average of 34.5 and bowling at 54.00.

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His best match so far was a Shield match against Tasmania, where he picked up scores of 41 and 53. However, when he got dismissed in the second knock, he punched a changeroom wall in frustration and fractured his wrist, which led to him missing important fixtures such as the One Day Cup final and the Australia A versus Pakistan tour match.

As a result, he was no hope for either Test against Pakistan, nor the first Test against New Zealand – and he has admitted “my wrist will never be 100 per cent”.

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He has had a complicated career but, as he is only 28, the best years years of the talented all-rounder’s career may yet lay ahead for Mitchell Marsh.

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