Sri Lanka in Australia 2012 January 18, 2012

Cutting, Coulter-Nile part of PM's XI

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Upcoming fast bowlers Ben Cutting and Nathan Coulter-Nile will have the chance to press for roles in Australia's limited-overs and West Indies tour plans after they were named in the Prime Minister's XI to face Sri Lanka in Canberra on February 3.

The Australian Test match vice-captain Brad Haddin will lead the invitational XI, and alongside his fellow Canberra product Nathan Lyon, will return to Manuka Oval, the ground on which he first made his name as a representative of the ACT. Presently in the midst of a poor series against India, Haddin appears to be receiving every chance to regain form.

"As a cricketer growing up in Canberra without the exposure to first-class cricket, the PM's XI match was the one game I always looked forward to and always wanted to tick off as a player," Haddin said. "To be named captain is an honour.

"The team selected has some good form behind it and I hope to be able to get a win on the board. Having players like Nathan Lyon, Mitch Marsh and Adam Voges who all have international experience will go a long way to helping our chances too. It's also important for players to put their name in front of the selectors and give themselves every opportunity to press for a place in the Australian side.

"I'm also excited about playing with Dean Solway, whose family was a strong supporter of mine while I played cricket in Canberra. Dean's father [Peter] has been a big influence on my career so it will be nice to walk on to the field with Dean and share this experience with the family."

Cutting was 12th man for the first Test of the home summer against New Zealand at the Gabba before succumbing to a side strain in the Sheffield Shield. Coulter-Nile has also battled injury this summer but is highly regarded and shared drinks duties with Mitchell Marsh during Australia's Perth Test win over India.

Australia's coach Mickey Arthur and the team performance manager Pat Howard are both intent on expanding the team's pool of available fast bowlers, a desire encouraged by the surfeit of injuries suffered by young pacemen in recent times.

"The PM's XI game is a special fixture in the Australian cricket calendar," the national selector John Inverarity said. "It provides a unique opportunity for many of the country's most talented and promising youngsters to showcase their skills on the international stage.

"Brad Haddin as captain and Nathan Lyon are two of our Test players who will be returning to Canberra. Local fans will be especially keen to watch and catch up with them. Peter Forrest has been in very good form this season and has been named as vice-captain. Ben Cutting is returning from injury and will be keen to make his mark."

The match takes place on the same day as Australia's second international Twenty20 fixture against India at the MCG.

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Meety on January 20, 2012, 4:52 GMT

    @Doogius - I think you'll find that whilst Haddin hasn't played for "Canberra" he HAS played for the ACT! I thought he actually played for the Comets as well as the ACT side that would play trialls against touring teams or State 2nd XIs.

  • Busie1979 on January 20, 2012, 3:12 GMT

    Agree with Zenboomerang's comments.

    O'keefe could upstage Lyon if given the opportunity.

    Wade needs opportunities - he is a better batsman than Paine, although I hear Paine is a better keeper. To stick with Haddin, he needs to commit to the next world cup. Even if he does, will he still be the best keeper?

    What happened to Clint McKay? He was outstanding in ODIs, got injured just before the world cup and was never heard of again. While the bowling is currently strong, he is unlucky to have only had one test. He was ditched very quickly but is still performing really well.

    And Bollinger? Ok he's injured but doesn't look llike he is in the selector's thinking anymore despite his very good record.

    Starc has had an easy ride into tests - he needs wickets at state level.

    Trent Copeland? He was going to be the next leader of the attack. He also has been very quickly forgotten.

    Now we are focusing on Cutting, Coulter-Nile and Nesser.

    Who will be forgotten next?

  • Green_and_Gold on January 19, 2012, 14:24 GMT

    Why are so many people questioning why Haddins in the team - why woulnt he be. Is is the one player from the main side that needs to be there. If you are not going to drop him then you give him the chance to spend time in the middle to find his confidence and rythem. When did this nation turn into a bunch of wingers?

  • zenboomerang on January 19, 2012, 4:06 GMT

    Seems like a good pace bowling outfit - I would have added Dan Christian for his allrounder capabilities... O'Keefe or Maxwell should be the spinner - Lyons got his national spot already... Neser, Patterson don't make sense - lots of players trying to get picked nationally that are way before them... Solways a local - so OK... Haddin also a local - lucky for him (or maybe not if he fails)... Voges - I would have picked him for the Test team before Marsh, also a very handy spinner with good FC stats - getting on, but could give us 3-4 years at Test level...

  • Doogius on January 19, 2012, 2:00 GMT

    @Michael. Haddins playing because he hasn't scored a run in aeons and can't catch. Playing him in a 50 over game gives more opportunity for him to work out which side of the bat he should actually be using. He played for Queanbeyan (NSW actually) and ANU, not Canberra. If you don't think his selection is a legup by CA, sweet but its been done plenty of times over the years - in the past there was some honesty saying that it was about getting some form. Lyon gets unimportant game time against top quality spin players - well worth his selection but Hads is in there to give him another chance. Especially after his lengthy knock last night :) As for reading too much, you might try reading the Argus review, might change your outlook signficantly...

  • Meety on January 19, 2012, 0:24 GMT

    @Cummins_Hazlewood - why did you have to go & give a plausible reason as to no Vics in the team! You have effectively stopped about 20 whingers from having a whinge! Shame on you! LOL! BTW - I agree re: Failkner!

  • Ms.Cricket on January 18, 2012, 22:47 GMT

    Julia Gillard cannot run the country right nor can pick a good PM XI. LOL

  • TEST_CRICKET_ONLY on January 18, 2012, 21:24 GMT

    Prime Minister's XI is probably about Haddin's standard. Perhaps he could stay there permanently.

  • dummy4fb on January 18, 2012, 19:10 GMT

    Haddin is playing this game because he is originally from the Canberra region and played for Canberra for many years, hence why Lyon is also playing. Don't read too much into things people!

  • maddinson on January 18, 2012, 16:20 GMT

    there is a 1st class match scheduled between 2-5 feb involving victoria and this match is on 3rd feb and that's the only reason no player from Victoria is selected. Faulkner should be there but I won't mind if he is selected for limited overs team straightway.

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