Batsman dropped for lack of form

Cosgrove axed by South Australia

Cricinfo staff

February 26, 2008

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Mark Cosgrove remains in South Australia's plans but his lack of runs has cost him his place in the Pura Cup side © Getty Images
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Mark Cosgrove has been dumped from the South Australia side less than 18 months after he was in the Australia one-day international team. Cosgrove has struggled with form and fitness this season and has been left out of the Redbacks' Pura Cup squad to take on Queensland at Adelaide Oval starting on Friday.

Although his weight continues to be an issue - in the past he has been suspended by his state for returning unfit from a club stint in England - it is Cosgrove's lack of runs that has cost him his place this time. In his seven Pura Cup matches this summer he has made 340 runs at 26.15 with a highest score of 76.

It has been a rapid fall for the man Australia hoped might become a key part of the middle order of the national side in the future. He played three ODIs, all in 2006, and was invited to the Centre of Excellence last year as Australia's selectors aimed to keep monitoring his progress.

"It has always been made very clear to everyone that selections are made based on performance," David Kelly, one of South Australia's selectors, said. "Mark is an outstanding cricket talent and remains an important part of our plans moving forward. But, he is no exception to the rule, every Redback must earn their spot in the team and Mark's form has not permitted him to do so."

The loss of Cosgrove and Matthew Elliott, who has retired, has opened the door for Andy Delmont to return to the side and for Jake Brown, a Redbacks rookie, to make his first-class debut. Brown averages 47 in the Adelaide grade competition this season and is also a useful left-arm fast-medium bowler.

Queensland also had a gap to fill following the retirement of Michael Kasprowicz and Chris Swan has been called into the attack. The Bulls also included Aaron Nye as a replacement for Grant Sullivan.

Queensland squad Greg Moller, Ryan Broad, Martin Love, Jimmy Maher (capt), Shane Watson, Aaron Nye, Chris Simpson, Ashley Noffke, Chris Hartley (wk), Daniel Doran, Chris Swan, Scott Brant.

South Australia squad Daniel Harris, Shane Deitz, Callum Ferguson, Daniel Christian, Andy Delmont, Jake Brown, Graham Manou (capt, wk), Mark Cleary, Ryan Harris, Jason Gillespie, Dan Cullen, Paul Rofe.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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