Now that the T20s against South Africa are done and dusted, Australia’s attention turns swiftly to the ODIs, and more importantly, the World Cup.
After facing the Proteas in five ODIs, the first of which gets underway on Thursday evening, the Australians will jet off to India to finalise their World Cup preparation.
On Wednesday morning, Australia unveiled a provisional 15-player squad for the World Cup campaign, with Aaron Hardie, Nathan Ellis and Tanveer Sangha missing out on selection. However, the Australians are permitted to make changes to the squad until September 28, opening the door for the likes of Tim David, Marnus Labuschagne and Spencer Johnson to push their case for World Cup selection in South Africa.
Australia is coming off eight consecutive ODI defeats in South Africa, with their most recent away triumph against the Proteas coming way back in 2011. South Africa’s squad has been boosted by the return of superstars Quinton de Kock, Anrich Nortje and Kagiso Rabada, who were rested for the recent T20 series.
Meanwhile, several first-choice players are missing from Australia’s touring party, including Mitchell Starc, Steve Smith, Glenn Maxwell and captain Pat Cummins, all of whom are nursing injuries.
The first ODI between South Africa and Australia is scheduled to get underway at Bloemfontein’s Mangaung Oval on Thursday evening at 9pm AEST.
Watch Australia’s Tour of South Africa on Kayo Sports. Every Match Live & On-Demand. Join Kayo now and start streaming instantly >
AUSTRALIA’S INTRIGUING WARNER DILEMMA
Who opens the batting for Australia at the World Cup?
It’s one of the most intriguing debates ahead of the 50-over tournament, with three world-class players seemingly in a battle for two spots.
After Aaron Finch retired from ODI cricket last year, Travis Head and David Warner opened the batting together during last summer’s three-match series against England, and the left-handers immediately hit it off. Head and Warner combined for stands of 147, 33 and 269 as Australia cruised to a 3-0 series whitewash over the old enemy.
Australia’s World Cup opening partnership was sorted — before Mitchell Marsh threw a spanner in the works earlier this year.
In March, Warner was ruled out of the first ODI against India due to injury, with Marsh replacing the veteran opener at the top of the order. The West Australian proceeded to blast 81 (65), 66* (36) and 47 (47), later named player of the series as the tourists toppled India in their own backyard 2-1.
When Warner returned for the third ODI in Chennai, he slotted in at No. 4, only the second time in 142 ODIs he hadn’t opened the batting for Australia.
“I loved batting with Heady,” Marsh told Fox Cricket last month.
“We’ve got a very close relationship, and I love the idea of whatever team we’re in for Australia that the openers have a really good relationship, both on the field and off the field.
“It’s been really important to be adaptable, because we have so many guys who can bat anywhere.
“And I think that’s what makes us a really dangerous team … anyone in our top six can open.
“Whatever role I have in the World Cup, whether that’s No. 3, No. 5, No. 6, running the drinks, I’ll be there with bells on and doing it to be the best of my abilities.”
Marsh cracked back-to-back fifties in the recent T20 series against South Africa, creating further headaches for national selectors.
“It’s going to be imperative to get off to really fast starts and right now, Travis Head and Mitch Marsh are our most explosive players. I think Warner can come in at No. 4,” former Australian captain Tim Paine told SEN last month.
“He’s a good player of spin, he’s fast between the wickets, he’s also got power and can control the innings. So I like having him in the middle order in those conditions.
“And I have heard that from a few people, that it’s certainly been talked about.”
STOINIS OR GREEN? OR BOTH?
Australia is lucky to have a plethora of all-rounders at their disposal — and they all happen to hail from Western Australia.
Marcus Stoinis and Mitchell Marsh have been stalwarts in Australia’s white-ball side for several years, while Cameron Green and Aaron Hardie are exciting talents with bright futures.
But how many all-rounders is too many?
“In ODIs, having all-rounders is really important, because you need to find 50 overs,” Australian captain Pat Cummins told Fox Cricket last month.
“We’re really lucky at the moment because we have five all-rounders who are in the team for their batting alone, or have played in the ODI side just as batters.
“I don’t think you can have too many (all-rounders). If anything, it just gives you lots of flexibility.”
Stoinis has rarely missed selection in the ODI team since his breakout century against the Black Caps in Auckland in January 2017. Two years later, he was named ODI Player of the Year at the Australian Cricket Awards following a prolific 12 months in canary yellow.
However, since the start of the 2019 World Cup, Stoinis’ ODI numbers have dipped considerably. He has averaged 16.50 with zero fifties in his 23 previous knocks, while he has never scored an ODI fifty in an Australian victory.
If Stoinis can’t rediscover some form in the ODIs against South Africa, it would become difficult to justify his selection if Green was waiting in the wings.
Green currently averages 50.33 in the ODI format, scoring a match-winning 89 not out against New Zealand in Cairns last year. The previous week, he claimed a maiden ODI five-wicket haul against Zimbabwe.
The 24-year-old has also proven a damaging weapon in subcontinent conditions, blasting a century for the Mumbai Indians in this year’s IPL and also turning heads during last year’s T20I tour of India.
Pending team balance, there might be room for both Stoinis and Green in the same starting XI, but a tricky decision looms if one of the all-rounders needs to make way.
NO ROOM FOR SPIN PRODIGY
Tanveer Sangha proved he was the real deal during the T20s against South Africa, taking a four-wicket haul on international debut to press his case for World Cup selection.
The 21-year-old, who recently recovered from a back stress fracture, only has five List A games under his belt, but was a surprise addition to Australia’s initial World Cup squad.
Sangha joined fellow leg-spinner Adam Zampa and West Australian tweaker Ashton Agar in the 18-player squad, but understandably missed selection when the roster was trimmed by three names this week.
“I’m usually not a person to think about the future,” Sangha said of his potential World Cup call-up last week.
“I know there are a lot of people talking about it. That would be an unbelievable thing, especially having not played cricket for a long time, then coming back and playing a few games in The Hundred and now making my debut for Australia, it would be an unreal six months to be a part of.
“I do see it being tough to break into.
“Playing where my parents are from and where my heritage is from would be unbelievable and showcasing what I could do would be an amazing experience.
“I’d love to play one-day cricket for Australia.
“But I like to stay in the present and would worry about that later on. I’m just very happy with where I am right now.”
Agar has a superb T20I record, but his 50-over numbers leave a lot to be desired. He has taken 20 ODI wickets at 45.90, never managing more than two scalps in a match.
The 29-year-old was infamously sent home during Australia’s recent Test tour of India, replaced by Queensland’s Matt Kuhnemann because national selectors “felt that there were better alternatives”.
However, Agar crucially offers variation with his left-arm orthodox, also providing valuable lower-order runs. This versatility, along with his prior international experience, was enough to cement his spot in the provisional 15-player squad.
RELIABLE ABBOTT BEATS OUT CRAFTY ELLIS
Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood form one of cricket’s most formidable pace trios, and each will play a vital role in the upcoming World Cup.
Starc was the leading wicket-taker in the two consecutive World Cup campaigns, Hazlewood is sitting at No. 1 on the ICC ODI bowling rankings, while Cummins is the captain.
However, each of them are susceptible to injury, and at least one reserve pace bowler will be needed in the finalised World Cup squad. Cameron Green and Marcus Stoinis can do a job in the middle overs, but they’re in the squad primarily for their batting.
Therefore, the looming decision becomes whether Sean Abbott or Nathan Ellis misses the cut — and Wednesday morning’s announcement confirmed that Abbott had won the race.
Abbott has put together a handful of impressive ODI performances over the last 12 months. Since the start of September last year, the New South Welshman has averaged 18.10 with the ball in ODIs, leaking just 3.77 runs per over.
The 31-year-old was also the leading wicket-taker of the recent T20 series against South Africa, snaring eight scalps at 8.75.
Meanwhile, Ellis is a proven weapon in the death overs. He has become a highly sought-after cricketer on the white-ball franchise circuit, making cameos in the Indian Premier League and The Hundred.
“I haven’t played consecutive games (for Australia), but sort of played one game here, one game there,” Ellis told reporters last week.
“It’s definitely easy to fall into the mindset of, ‘This is my only chance, this could be my last chance’. For me, trying to get that sort of mentality out of my mind is a challenge.
“I’m under no illusions at the current stage that I’m not in the first XI, so for me it’s about taking the opportunity when it comes and keep throwing my hat in the ring.”
Abbott probably wouldn’t crack into the first-choice starting XI, but he’s a more than worthy replacement if Cummins, Hazlewood or Starc breaks down in India.
MAXWELL INJURY OPENS DOOR FOR T20 POWERHOUSE
After his explosive 64* (28) in the first T20 against South Africa, Tim David was parachuted into Australia’s ODI squad for the South Africa tour at the eleventh hour.
The 27-year-old is one of T20 cricket’s most prolific middle-order batters, but his 50-over credentials aren’t as impressive. He has only played 16 List A matches, the most recent being a Marsh Cup contest for Western Australia in November 2021.
However, his destructive batting potential is difficult to ignore. There aren’t many cricketers that you’d prefer at the crease for the final five overs of a run chase.
David is not in Australia’s provisional World Cup squad, but national selectors are permitted to make changes before the September 28 deadline. If he gets an opportunity in the ODI series, one decent knock could earn him a plane ticket to India.
“His ability to win matches is why he’s in this team,” Australian captain Mitchell Marsh told reporters last week.
“I want him to play however he wants every game and I know if he does that he will win us games. He’s an outstanding asset for Australian cricket.”
With uncertainty surrounding Glenn Maxwell’s fitness ahead of the marquee tournament, David would be the ideal like-for-like replacement if the Victorian was ruled out. However, chief selector George Bailey confirmed that Maxwell was on track to recover for the tournament kicks off in October.
“He’s a wonderful addition,” Maxwell told ESPNcricinfo this week.
“I think the way he batted in that first (T20I against South Africa), showed great maturity, and a great level head and I think any time you bring a player in who’s in good form, he’s got a history of great power hitting the back end, but what we probably haven’t seen a lot on the international stage from Tim is that style of play where he is able to get through a tough time. He’s is a very good player spin. He bats well in India. It doesn’t surprise me that he’s been added to that squad.”
Australia’s ODI tour of South Africa
September 7 – First ODI, Bloemfontein
September 9 – Second ODI, Bloemfontein
September 12 – Third ODI, Potchefstroom
September 15 – Fourth ODI, Centurion
September 17 — Fifth ODI, Johannesburg
Australia ODI squad for South Africa tour
Mitchell Marsh (c), Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Pat Cummins, Tim David, Nathan Ellis, Cameron Green, Aaron Hardie, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Spencer Johnson, Marnus Labuschagne, Tanveer Sangha, Marcus Stoinis, David Warner, Adam Zampa
Situs Bandar Togel Online Terpercaya bisa anda akses langsung di Agen Resmi Togel Online, TOTOCC adalah situs Togel Online dengan pasaran togel terlengkap. Anda bisa bermain langsung dan melihat hasil langsung dari togel hari ini hanya di TOTOCC.COM.