Exiled stars’ well timed surge as teen bolter emerges: The contenders to succeed Warner

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Exiled stars’ well timed surge as teen bolter emerges: The contenders to succeed Warner
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Having scrambled to fill one opener place final summer time, Australia selectors may quickly be scrambling once more with the information that the end is nigh for David Warner in red ball cricket.

Warner this week revealed that it may very well be his “final 12 months in Take a look at” cricket as he plans to prioritise white ball codecs within the closing years of his worldwide profession.

“Take a look at cricket will in all probability be the primary one to fall off,” Warner mentioned on Triple M’s Deadset Legends.

“As a result of that’s the way it will pan out. The T20 World Cup is in 2024, (one-day) World Cup subsequent yr.

“Probably it may very well be my final 12 months in Take a look at cricket.

“However I really like the white-ball recreation. It’s wonderful.”

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With the potential exception of Nathan Lyon, there’s arguably no more durable place in Australia’s Take a look at XI to interchange than Warner’s.

Australia is experiencing a dearth of Take a look at-calibre openers with Warner going by means of eight totally different companions since 2019.

When Marcus Harris was changed throughout final summer time’s Ashes, it was 35-year-old Usman Khawaja who took his spot on the high of the order.

So the place can selectors flip now in the event that they all of a sudden must discover a new opening associate for Khawaja?

Right here, we check out the exiled stars, the following era and the bolters who may substitute Warner subsequent yr.

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THE EXILED STARS

High of this listing, and in addition favorite to interchange Warner if he was leaving proper now, is Victorian opener and 14-Take a look at participant Marcus Harris. Of all of the contenders talked about on this article, solely Harris is in Australia’s present squad and has performed a Take a look at up to now yr. He’s removed from an impressive candidate given his Take a look at common of 25.29 from loads of alternatives. Nonetheless, there’s hope he took some constructive steps in England this winter, the place he made 726 runs at 42.70 within the County Championship for Gloucestershire. He’s additionally began this Sheffield Defend season properly with 288 runs at 41.14.

One other former Take a look at opener, Matt Renshaw, additionally impressed within the County Championship this yr. Renshaw opened for Somerset and averaged 47.69 with two centuries from his eight matches. He’s taken that kind again dwelling this Defend season with an unbeaten double century in opposition to NSW final month. Renshaw — who performed 11 Checks between 2016 and 2018 and made 184 in simply his fourth match — continues to be solely 26 and may very well be a robust contender if his kind continues to development upward.

Coming from additional behind, albeit not fully out of the operating, is Cameron Bancroft. The 29-year-old hasn’t been a part of a Take a look at squad for the reason that 2019 Ashes, the place he was dropped after simply two Checks. In hindsight, it was a harsh axing contemplating his collection wasn’t the identical abject failure of Warner or Harris. Bancroft at the very least caught round to face 40 balls on common, in comparison with 20.2 for Harris and 18.4 for Warner. Bancroft has two centuries within the first 4 matches of the home season, and made 141 in final season’s closing in opposition to Victoria.

Marcus Harris is the frontrunner.Supply: Getty Photographs

THE NEXT GEN

If selectors may choose anybody to interchange Warner, then it could doubtless be Will Pucovski. Thought of a expertise of Ricky Ponting proportions, even his Take a look at debut at 22 years previous felt a very long time within the making. If Pucovski can actually get his profession again on monitor, then he will likely be on the entrance of the queue. Though, a number of concussions and one other indefinite go away of absence taken in October because of private causes creates loads of doubt.

Elsewhere, South Australia’s Henry Hunt was among the many greatest openers final home season. The 25-year-old right-hander was the fourth-highest scorer with 601 runs at 42.92, and he was the one batter to attain three centuries for the season. That earnt him choice for the Australia A tour of Sri Lanka in June when he recovered from a pair within the first match to make 107. He’s averaging 39.00 after 4 rounds this Defend season.

Queensland’s Bryce Avenue has additionally opened the batting for Australia A up to now 12 months, making an unbeaten 119 in opposition to the England Lions final December. The second-half of the summer time wasn’t as profitable, nevertheless, whereas the provision of Khawaja and Marnus Labuschagne has meant the 24-year-old hasn’t performed a recreation for the Bulls up to now this season.

In the meantime, Tasmania’s two openers, Tim Ward and Caleb Jewell, have hit the bottom operating this season and jumped forward of Avenue within the Take a look at choice queue. Ward is averaging 60.83 and has been a remarkably constant performer with 4 half centuries from seven innings, though no triple-figure rating. Jewell, who at 25 is one yr Ward’s senior, made an unbeaten 108 in opposition to South Australia and has 285 runs at 47.50.

South Australia’s Henry Hunt<b/>was among the many greatest openers final home season.Supply: Getty Photographs

THE BOLTERS

Contemplating the numbers, it’s unusual that Sam Whiteman’s identify hasn’t been talked about extra when discussing opening contenders. Solely Peter Handscomb scored extra runs final Defend season than 30-year-old Whiteman, who piled on 641 at 58.27 for Western Australia, together with 85 and 123 within the closing. His latest kind isn’t unhealthy both with the opener making 193 in opposition to South Australia final week. Whiteman is a bolter at greatest however with 78 first-class matches behind him, selectors may do worse than take a better take a look at the left-hander.

Two different batters who doubtless aren’t within the combine but, however are price mentioning, are younger weapons Teague Wyllie (18) and Ashley Chandrasinghe. Few cricket followers knew these names a month in the past however pleasure spreads quick when a younger participant scores a century within the Sheffield Defend.

Teenage sensation smashes Defend century | 02:49

Eighteen-year-old Wyllie scored 104, in opposition to an assault together with Nathan Lyon, in simply his third match to announce his arrival. Chandrasinghe, 20, changed Pucovski in Victoria’s XI and made 119 not out off a staggering 333 balls in opposition to Tasmania in Hobart. Each are batting at first-drop and have an extended method to go, however they’re price keeping track of. Moreover, Wyllie was amongst three names dropped by former selector Mark Waugh as gamers he believes may step up “within the subsequent couple of years”. The opposite two have been Ward and Hunt.

Teague Wyllie, 18, has generated loads of pleasure.Supply: Getty Photographs

THE LEFT-FIELD OPTIONS

Selectors George Bailey, Tony Dodemaide and Andrew McDonald have a mind-set outdoors the field. As such, there’s a risk Australia received’t be on the lookout for an opener in any respect.

An possibility with some benefit is having dashing left-hander Travis Head promoted to open the batting, and discovering a alternative at No.5 as an alternative. Head is an analogous batter to Warner with each being aggressive left-handers who prefer to put the stress again on the bowler early. Like Warner, he’s struggled away from dwelling, however he was named player-of-the-Ashes final summer time for his 357 runs at 59.50. He doesn’t open the batting for South Australia, however has finished so 15 instances for Australia in ODI cricket with nice success. That can develop into 16 on Thursday.

If there was a spot to fill at No.5, it opens issues as much as a brand new wave of contenders. Final yr’s topscorer within the Defend, Peter Handscomb is one. He made 697 runs at 49.78 and is off with a bang this season, too, with 544 runs at 108.8.

Renshaw is also an possibility at No.5 having batted there beforehand for each state and nation. Then there’s Kurtis Patterson, whose two Take a look at innings consists of an unbeaten 114 batting at No.6. The 29-year-old is averaging 53.80 this season and feels deserving of one other crack if a possibility was to come up.

And don’t neglect Mitch Marsh. He hasn’t performed crimson ball cricket in virtually a yr however, at 31-years-old, he looks like he’s higher ready than ever to play Take a look at cricket once more.



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