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matth

Roar Guru

Joined February 2019

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Life Long Brisbane Rugby League supporter, first Redcliffe and now Broncos. also a mad cricket follower and casual everything else follower.

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Yes, Agar like Finch is currently a lock in the side when fit. that would be like dropping Smith or Labs from the test side after a couple of Shield failures.

Australia confirm their two squads for tours of New Zealand and South Africa

And a history of not doing the business at international level, although I think he’s had no luck over his career.

Australia confirm their two squads for tours of New Zealand and South Africa

Yes, just imagine Smith being back as captain in that ‘bubble’. It’s going to be tough enough for Smith and Warner.

Australia confirm their two squads for tours of New Zealand and South Africa

I assume he is insurance as captain if Finch is injured. Heaven forbid they give Maxwell any responsibility!

Australia confirm their two squads for tours of New Zealand and South Africa

Probably a combination of an out of form Finch being a lock and some other successful franchises being partly on the back of overseas players?

Australia confirm their two squads for tours of New Zealand and South Africa

It looks a really good squad actually.

Australia confirm their two squads for tours of New Zealand and South Africa

I wonder whether Richardson is fit enough yet to stand up to consecutive days of test cricket bowling. I also wonder whether they see more urgency in getting T20 Internationals into him, because he could be key in the World Cup?

Australia confirm their two squads for tours of New Zealand and South Africa

As captain Finch was always going to be selected. Agar is coming back from injury. I’d suggest what has gone against Christian is simply his age as we come into a T20 world cup year. they want to try out the younger options and they can always parachute Christian in – they know what they will get with him.

Australia confirm their two squads for tours of New Zealand and South Africa

This is a really good insight. I believe Langer is a good motivator and Paine is a good man-manager but both may not be intuitive tacticians. There is a lack of flexibility. Langer must be part of this because at worst the captain can consult with the coach after each session and the coach has had time and perspective to see what the captain maybe can’t in the heat of battle.

What should Australia’s Test cricket plan be for 2021?

I struggle with your comment about the strength of test cricket right now. We have four teams in contention for top spot – India, NZ, England and Australia. SA are in a bit of a hole thanks to a recent exodus to England and retirement. Pakistan are good at ‘home’ and amazing for side that don’t actually get to play at home. The West Indies will likely never be strong again as their players cannot get the grounding the county cricket that underpinned their 1980’s success. Sri Lanka are in an inevitable hole after the retirement of their three greatest players Sanga, Murali and Jayawardene (apologies to Aravinda De Silva – he’s probably in that company).

So the question is, when in the history of cricket have we had such a strong and even profile of nations?

Up to 1950 it was only England and Australia. The West Indies, India and South Africa were weak and rarely if ever won.
In the 1950’s to 1960’s the West Indies joined England and Australia as top tier but this meant still only three. India and Pakistan were only ever competitive at home.
During the 1960’s South Africa joined them. This is as close as we have ever gotten to today’s depth. India and Pakistan were still only competitive at home.
In the 1970’s South Africa dropped away. Nothing else changed.
In the 1980’s Australia dropped off a bit so the overall competition was weaker. England were dropping as well but not as quickly. NZ came up a bit on the back of Hadlee and Pakistan and India were finally competitive away, but still not winning.
In the 1990’s England fell to pieces, Australia resurged and the West Indies were still strong.
In the 2000’s India finally started to make it’s mark and England rebounded but the West Indies fell away.

So when exactly has the overall depth of test cricket been stronger than it is now? In the past decade India have won away in Australia, NZ won away in England, SA and Australia swap away wins.

The World Test Championship shows Test cricket is in rude health

This needs to walk before it can run, so the measured approach to date has been correct in my opinion. There is also a financial consideration here, hence travel costs for a suggest PNG team is not an option.

Many comments here seem to come from the point of view of whether the NRLW can stand against the NRL in terms of enticing viewers. I submit that’s entirely the wrong question. The target market for spectators and viewers is more about girls who enjoy rugby league. It’s not about whether the standard matches the men but whether the spectators in the target market get that tribal connection with their club and want to grow up and play. If that happens the league will grow.

Can the NRL raise the women's game from an afterthought?

What a wonderful article Barry. Where did you get all that info? Great memories and an appropriate tribute to these men who played the great game we all love.

Remembering those who departed in 2020

So why has Neser been doing so well the last couple of years?

Depth issues mean few changes for South Africa tour

You can’t mark a young player forever. Maddinson has come a long way since then.

Depth issues mean few changes for South Africa tour

If we win with our B Team against what is currently a very strong NZ limited overs squad that will be quite an achievement. I’d like to see something like:

Finch
Phillipe
Stoinis
McDermott
Maxwell
Carey
Turner
Zampa
Behrendorrf
Stanlake
K Richardson/Tye/Siddle

Big Bash form to dictate Australia's biggest T20 World Cup audition

Wade just bashed a fast 80, so don’t link his test troubles with T20 form. Can’t argue with Finch though. But as captain and our best T20 player historically, he should get every chance

My Australian T20 squad to tour New Zealand

He always seems just a bit behind the main players when discussion arise. Carey and Inglis both ahead of him. But Jimmy wouldn’t let anybody down. He will likely join Seccombe and Hartley as great QLD keepers who never got a chance to represent their country.

Maxwell, Neser and Swepson should play in South Africa

Assuming there will be a COVID bubble in SA, we will need a big squad as we can’t just fly a replacement over if required.

What happens if another half dozen players are caught sandpapering over there? We will need back up! 😂 😂

Maxwell, Neser and Swepson should play in South Africa

Interesting choice with Handscomb. He has become somewhat of a forgotten man when these discussions happen.

Maxwell, Neser and Swepson should play in South Africa

India has I think around 36 first class sides vs Australia’s 6? So just to get within reach of an Indian cap has to be a great achievement and the ‘B’ team that finiahsed the series would all be in the top say 6-10% of all first class cricketers in India Our first choice test squad includes the top 17% of first class cricketers in Australia.
That’s depth.

India beating Australia was an immortal win

It just so happened that when Pakistan’s 1990’s attack was very good, Australia just happened to have one of the best test cricket sides in history.

India beating Australia was an immortal win

Was there a sliding door moment before the final test had even started, when a sore and dispirited Mitchell Starc entered the team doctor for his regular visit and the doctor finished by saying “you are good to go Mitch, give ’em hell”.

The sliding doors of Test cricket

Adelaide 2006 for example, where England just suffocated themselves, with a bit of Warne pressure assisting.

The sliding doors of Test cricket

Looking through the BBL performance so far, plus who will be available (i.e. not flying to SA), I’d go with:

Finch (c)
Phillipe
Stoinis
McDermott
Maxwell
Carey
Christian
Kane Richardson
Zampa
Billy Stanlake – still developing, has experience and a better average and strike rate this year than Meredith
Behrendorrf

M Marsh
Turner – he’s worth persisting with and his figures of 184 runs at a trike rate of over 158 have been good for an explosive finisher.
Tye
Sams

Smokies:

Jordan Silk – I know it’s left field but he’s turned himself into a decent middle order finisher and we have few of those.
Wes Agar
Peter Siddle – if they want a old head to go with the kids, is there anyone better?
Inglis – with Carey and Phillipe, is he needed? I would actually love to see him tour SA, as he could be our next red ball keeper.

Jhye Richardson will likely be on the place to SA. Maxwell should too, but that’s another story…

Tanveer Sangha and Wes Agar are in my Aussie T20I squad for NZ tour

Rahane for me. to keep that team going, to turn them around from 36 all out, with his own century as the example as well as through his calm demeanour. It was a top class series for the captain.

Cummins was excellent as always by the way.

Pat Cummins did not deserve the player of the series award