Crosthwaite dropped from Pura Cup squad
Victoria have axed their wicketkeeper Adam Crosthwaite for their first Pura Cup match of the season. The Bushrangers instead chose Matthew Wade, who they recruited from Tasmania during the off-season, for the game against South Australia beginning on Sunday at Adelaide Oval.
Wade, who turns 20 later this month, played one FR Cup game for Tasmania last season and believed his chances of a first-class debut would improve with a move to Melbourne. That opportunity has immediately come at the expense of Crosthwaite, who has spent two summers as Victoria's first-choice gloveman but has managed only one Pura Cup half-century.
A former captain of the Tasmania Under-19 side and a member of Australia's Under-19 World Cup squad in 2005-06, Wade impressed Victoria during his junior career with his ability to regularly build big scores. He was also productive in his first game in Melbourne's club cricket on the weekend, when he made 76 for Camberwell Magpies.
"I'm thrilled to get an opportunity to play for the Bushrangers at first-class level," Wade said. "Hopefully I can grab it with both hands and help get some points on the board for Victoria. We've had some solid hit-outs leading into the season so the whole squad's really excited and can't wait to get stuck into it."
Aiden Blizzard is also a chance to make his first-class debut if Victoria can find room in their middle order. Blizzard made a powerful statement in his first Twenty20 game last season when he blasted 89 from 38 balls at Adelaide Oval.
The Bushrangers named a 13-man squad for this weekend's match with Andrew McDonald's inclusion dependent on the results of a scan on his right shoulder. McDonald had surgery during the winter and pulled up sore from a recent bowling spell.
Shane Harwood is still recovering from a shoulder injury, leaving Victoria with a slightly inexperienced bowling line-up. Gerard Denton will lead the attack, while Allan Wise could play his first state match since 2005-06 after missing most of last season with stress fractures in his back.
Squad Nick Jewell, Michael Klinger, David Hussey, Robert Quiney, Aiden Blizzard, Cameron White (capt), Andrew McDonald, Matthew Wade (wk), Gerard Denton, Bryce McGain, Peter Siddle, Allan Wise, Dirk Nannes.