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The Bush

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Joined January 2010

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The Wallabies, Queensland Reds, Brisbane Roar FC, Manchester City FC, Bath RFC, Stade Toulousain, Green Bay Packers, Vancouver Canucks and Kolkata Knightriders.

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I loved Mark Waugh, he was the most natural cricketer ever, not just in the batting department, but in the field too, he had that knack for getting wickets when he bowled and of course was probably one of the finest catchers in the history of cricket.

Mitch Johnson too was so good to watch when he was on song, great in the field for a big guy and electric with the bat and of course probably no one has been so exciting to watch with the ball since Warne retired.

Australia staring at big loss in Abu Dhabi

I like your comment about Marnus being a fun cricketer, because you’re definitely right, some players are simply more enjoyable to watch for some reason (and I don’t even mean that just from an aesthetics perspective). I always felt that way about Symonds too, he was always hunting in the field and would come in a pick up handy wickets. Was always in the game.

Australia staring at big loss in Abu Dhabi

No, just making conversation, cause that’s what the site is all about. And frustrated about the team, very frustrated.

Labuschagne blunder sums up Australia's day of woe

I had no issue with Holland playing in this series. I’m not sure I would have picked him for this test, after his performance in the first, but he certainly deserved to be there (and in the squad).

I agree that everyone has their favourites and sometimes the selectors have to go with their instincts, but averages don’t lie and we’re shooting ourselves in the foot by picking players who have no track record of being able to put together consistent scores.

I’m a Maxwell fan and I think he should be there, but if the selectors had opted to have a line up with Burns, Renshaw and other players with 40 FC averages, then so be it. But M Marsh and Marnus simply haven’t done enough to warrant selection (ever) in the test side at this point.

Labuschagne blunder sums up Australia's day of woe

It 100% supports your point jamesb, we need to pick players off of the back of consistent, back-to-back-to-back seasons.

Labuschagne blunder sums up Australia's day of woe

That’d be a tragedy if players like Burns and Maxwell gave up FC cricket; that’s the problem, not enough quality in the competition…

Labuschagne blunder sums up Australia's day of woe

Actually M Marsh was recalled last summer off of the back of half a Shield season during which he averaged 40…

Labuschagne blunder sums up Australia's day of woe

I’d prefer Khawaja batting at 3 in Australia, so I’d go; Renshaw, Burns, Khawaja, Head, Finch, Maxwell.

Labuschagne blunder sums up Australia's day of woe

What’s the ratio of caught to dropped? I know Marnus dropped a sitter, but he’s taken a screamer… Marsh?

Labuschagne blunder sums up Australia's day of woe

Yeah I can see your point Ronan, but was it just a straight cold shoulder or a stern talking to? The cold shoulder seems a bit ridiculous, why not take the kid inside and give him a proper talking to (they call it critical feedback I’m pretty sure). As Pope says below, hopefully everyone got the cold shoulder then…

Labuschagne blunder sums up Australia's day of woe

Spot on Chris, in cricket experience only counts if it means you’re a consistent performer who stands up when needed. It’s not like Shaun is the captain who makes great tactical changes in the field or with the bowling (a la Taylor, who was probably carried at the end of the his career). Shaun is not a captain (we have three, even if one isn’t playing) and isn’t even much of a fieldsman. There is simply no point to keeping him around.

Khawaja is 31, has been playing professional cricket for a decade all around the world and has played more than 30 odd tests. Lyon has the fourth most wickets of any Australian bowler ever. Paine is well into his thirties, is the captain and has been playing cricket even longer than Khawaja. Finch has captained Australian in other formats. Exactly how much experience does this team need exactly? The Marshes have to go, Shaun forever and M Marsh until he can average more than 40 across two straight Shield seasons (not half of a season on the back of one big score).

Labuschagne blunder sums up Australia's day of woe

He needs to do more than just one good Shield season. That is the problem right now, we’re picking players, if they have any pedigree at all, off of the back of one good season. Look at Hilton Cartwright; at one point he was averaging 50 odd in FC cricket (small sample base) and came into the team. He has barely been able to buy a run since then and his average has dropped down to 37, meaning he’s not even in the 5 to 10 odd best batsmen outside this team; Burns, Renshaw, Maxwell, Pattenson, Bailey (39 average), White all have averages of approximately 40.

Labuschagne blunder sums up Australia's day of woe

Statistically M Marsh isn’t even in the top 30 or 40 batsmen in Australian FC cricket. People have questioned Marnus’s selection, but he still has a higher FC average than M Marsh.

Labuschagne blunder sums up Australia's day of woe

I didn’t see that, but that is so poor from Langer.

The kid didn’t pick himself. He’s very young, very inexperienced and has been handed one of the toughest debuts an Australia is ever going to get. If you’re not getting supported by the coach, what is the point of the coach?

So much for making great young men.

Labuschagne blunder sums up Australia's day of woe

Agreed. Where does Finch field, he’s usually at slip yeah?

Labuschagne shows all-round potential against Pakistan

Poor old Renshaw can’t afford to field there ever again, so someone has to do it.

Labuschagne shows all-round potential against Pakistan

Yeah, not the greatest. But crickets a funny game, you take screamers and you drop sitters, the issue is that Australia hasn’t been as consistently good in the field as they used to be.

Labuschagne shows all-round potential against Pakistan

Ronan,

He also seems to be a great fieldsman, something that Australia used to lead the world at, but has dropped away at in the last few years. There was a time when you would have backed Australia to take every catch and effect a run out every innings, whilst saving 40 runs in the field, but we’ve dropped significantly from that standard.

Hopefully Marnus can back up it up today with the bat, because we need at least 400 if we’re to win this.

Labuschagne shows all-round potential against Pakistan

Nice summary Scott.

Just a small thing… in terms of last five played, you missed the Brisbane match… so it’s D, W, W, W, L for Australia…

Love the optimism, not sure I can see us winning this one, but there’s at least some hope, unlike when the series began.

Pakistan vs Australia: Second Test preview and prediction

I’ll have to defer to you Rellum, I wasn’t old enough to have seen him bat (or if I did, I don’t remember it).

All I can go off are his statistics, and an FC batting average of 36 and a test batting average of 37 suggests he was pretty average, even by the standards of the day, when batting averages were lower.

Wessels averaged 50 in FC (41 in tests);
Hookes averaged 50 in FC (though only 34 in tests);
Jones averaged 50 in FC (40s in tests);
Border averaged 50 and 50;
Boon averaged 44 in FC cricket (43 in tests).

And Hughes gave it away before things got really bad against the West Indies, who knows how low his average could have dropped if he’d played on for another 5 years for Australia.

Definitely agree with your point that even in the ’80s we had some world class batsmen in the side compared to the line up that will play today.

Australia on the brink of something special in UAE

Fair enough Pope, I get where you are coming from. Totally agree that the line up in 2016 was madness with the two all rounders, when neither was up to scratch with the bat. I have never understood why Henriques was ever near any Australian side… the guy is a very average cricketer.

Australia on the brink of something special in UAE

But Boon was very early on in his career at the time. At that line up against NZ didn’t have Wessels in it… And was Hughes actually any good? I guess averages were lower then.

Australia on the brink of something special in UAE

The current line up included three debutants, a guy with a batting average of 26 in tests, a number three with a batting average of 35 and Khawaja. How is that not way sillier than a line up that included Smith and Warner?

Australia on the brink of something special in UAE

Problem is that Smith is arguably the best since Bradman, so it’s hard to see how that line up could be as silly as the current one, when you have that in mind.

Australia on the brink of something special in UAE

He was great back in 2014 in the UAE from memory? So he can do it.

Australia on the brink of something special in UAE