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Opinion

Picking Australia's best three-format squad

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Roar Rookie
5th July, 2021
7

Australian cricket has a variety of options leading to many selection headaches and debates among cricket fans.

A few friends decided to test the options among each other. They participated in a draft in which each person selects a 15-man squad, one player at a time in a snaking order, and from this squad made XIs for each format.

There are a lot of debates to be made, and I wanted to share it with The Roar public for some more opinions.

The following squads were drafted, the order of the players being the order they were picked by that person.

Ryan
Steve Smith, Glenn Maxwell, Jhye Richardson, Josh Inglis, Mitch Swepson, Will Pucovski, Cam Green, Michael Neser, Matt Wade, Mitch Marsh, D’Arcy Short, Peter Siddle, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Kane Richardson, Cam Bancroft.

Arjun
Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood, Mitch Starc, Usman Khawaja, Ben McDermott, Travis Head, Nathan Lyon, Moises Henriques, Sean Abbott, Peter Handscomb, Josh Philippe, Dan Hughes, Marcus Harris, Daniel Sams, Chris Lynn.

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Will
David Warner, Marnus Labuschagne, Adam Zampa, Alex Carey, Marcus Stoinis, James Pattinson, Ashton Agar, Shaun Marsh, Jackson Bird, Aaron Finch, Jason Behrendorff, Jordan Silk, Riley Meredith, Nic Maddinson, Tim Paine.

Tests

Ryan
Pucovski, Bancroft, Smith, Wade, Green, M Marsh, Inglis, Neser, J Richardson, Siddle, Swepson.

Arjun
Harris, Khawaja, Head, Handscomb, Henriques, McDermott, Abbott, Cummins, Starc, Hazlewood, Lyon.

Will
Warner, Maddinson, Labuschagne, S Marsh, Carey, Stoinis, Paine, Agar, Pattinson, Bird, Meredith.

Steve Smith

(Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

In Tests they came to the consensus that the teams were too hard to split, all rated evenly. Will’s batting was deemed the best, and then Ryan’s marginally over Arjun.

Arjun’s bowling is clearly the best, and Ryan marginally over Will. As a result, all three teams are equal. It was also agreed that the complexity and unpredictability of the Test format makes it hard to call.

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ODIs

Ryan
Wade, Short, Smith, Green, M Marsh, Maxwell, Inglis, Coulter-Nile, Neser, J Richardson, Swepson.

Arjun
Hughes, McDermott, Khawaja, Handscomb, Henriques, Philippe, Sams, Cummins, Starc, Hazlewood, Lyon.

Will
Warner, Finch, Labuschagne, S Marsh, Carey, Stoinis, Agar, Pattinson, Behrendorff, Bird, Zampa.

Will’s team was deemed the strongest due to the batting being similar to the current national team and the bowling being solid.

Once again, due to Arjun’s bowling, his team is strengthened. Paired with decent domestic batsmen, it was chosen as the second best team.

Glenn Maxwell of Australia hits out

(Photo by Stu Forster/Getty Images for ECB)

Will and Arjun agreed due to the lack of penetration of Ryan’s bowlers as well as potential fragility in the batting made it the weakest side.

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However, Ryan himself though his ODI side was the best due to the overall flexibility of the side, with the abundance of all-rounders being able to cover for potentially weak bowlers. He also backed the explosiveness of his batting.

T20s

Ryan
Short, Wade, Smith, Maxwell, Inglis, M Marsh, Coulter-Nile, J Richardson, Swepson, K Richardson, Siddle.

Arjun
Khawaja, Philippe, Lynn, McDermott, Henriques, Sams, Abbott, Cummins, Starc, Hazlewood, Lyon.

Will
Warner, Finch, Labuschagne, Carey, Stoinis, Silk, Agar, Pattinson, Zampa, Behrendorff, Meredith.

Even though there is the possibility of collapse with the batting, combined with bowling, Arjun’s was picked as the best side. It was discussed that if the likes of Hazlewood and Starc played the amount of T20s that Kane Richardson or Merdith did, they would have more hype in the format.

Mitchell Starc celebrates taking a wicket

(Mark Metcalfe/Getty Images)

Will’s bowling is closer to Arjun’s this time, but his batting could be too sluggish, especially because of Warner and Finch’s recent struggles in the IPL and BBL respectively.

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Ryan’s side was deemed marginally second best, with a lot of exciting batsmen but still perhaps some questions over the bowling.

Overall, the teams are very even but there is a lot that can be debated. Note some of the draft decisions can seem questionable in hindsight, and a few good players such as Dan Christian may have been missed out in the heat of the moment. Let me know down below which sides you believe are the best.

Watch the draft and discussions that we had on YouTube.

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