Australia news December 14, 2011

Hughes pulls out of Big Bash League

43

Australia's under-fire Test opener Phillip Hughes has withdrawn from the Big Bash League in order to focus on his form in the longer format. Although Hughes is expected to be axed from the side for the Boxing Day Test against India after a disappointing few months, he has not entirely given up on retaining his spot and does not want to be distracted by the BBL over the next two weeks.

Hughes had signed for the Sydney Thunder, who begin their Twenty20 campaign on Saturday night against the Melbourne Stars at the MCG. Had Hughes played in that game, he would have needed to rush to Canberra on Sunday to prepare for Monday's three-day Cricket Australia Chairman's XI encounter against the Indians.

That match is his last chance to impress the selectors ahead of Boxing Day, after he was caught in the cordon by Martin Guptill off Chris Martin in all four innings of the recent Test series as New Zealand exploited his weakness outside off stump. Since Simon Katich was dumped from Australia's squad mid-year, Hughes has averaged 27.69 in Test cricket.

"Following my performances over the last few months, I have decided that, right now, I need to be completely focus on my first-class cricket career," Hughes said in a statement. "I'm obviously disappointed that I haven't been able to score the runs in the last few Tests that I know I am capable of and I want to do everything I can to ensure that my game continues to develop.

"I talked with Pup [captain Michael Clarke] and [coach] Mickey Arthur about it after the Hobart Test and they both supported my thinking. I then approached John Dyson (Sydney Thunder) and Pat Howard (Cricket Australia) to ensure that they would be comfortable for me to step away from my contract with the Thunder.

"Selfishly, it's the right decision for me but I'm obviously concerned that I have made this decision on the eve of the Thunder's first game. Everyone has been extremely understanding and I wish the boys all the best for a successful Big Bash season. I'm now focusing on next week's Chairman's XI game in Canberra and can't wait to face the Indian bowlers."

The Thunder will survive. Hughes would have been competing for top-order runs with Chris Gayle and David Warner had he played in the T20 competition, while Usman Khawaja is also part of the Thunder roster. And while Hughes deserves to be commended for his decision to concentrate on his form in the longer format, the move carries plenty of risk for him.

Should he fail to impress in the Chairman's XI match and win a place in the Boxing Day Test, he will have no first-class cricket to fall back on until the beginning of February, a T20 window having been created in the domestic calendar throughout January. That means Hughes would be trying to regain his touch in grade cricket and in the nets.

Hughes, 23, has three Test hundreds to his name but his tendency to edge outside off became a fatal flaw during the New Zealand series and he will need to rectify it before he wins another chance in the Test side. Earlier this week it was announced that he would play county cricket with Worcestershire next season, where his technique will be tested.

Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • hyclass on December 16, 2011, 11:51 GMT

    I thought it judicious to add a list of those changes & criticisms that have been levelled at Hughes game,either by the public,so-called experts or coaches.They read as follows: He scores to heavily on the offside.He should play more to the on.He should get behind the ball more.He should eschew his favourite cut & cover drives. He plays too square, he plays too fine.Hes too flashy.He should be more circumpsect like an opener.He should play straighter.He gets found out by the short ball.His techniches no good.Hes too jumpy.He should stop moving his back foot to leg.If this all sounds ugly,it damned well should & Australians should be ashamed to put their names to these statements.His back foot to leg closed his front shoulder.This put him in excellent position for offside and straight play.It also game him drive,power & timing into his shots.His closed faced grip,kept the ball on the ground,covered swing and aided flat batting & controlling short balls.These changes were forced on him.

  • hyclass on December 16, 2011, 11:41 GMT

    It should occurr to intelligent people,that players over the last 2-3 years have come into the Test side in form & fallen away drastically.This applies to virtually every cricketer in the side.It is replete with batting & bowling coaches who cant teach,fielding coaches inexplicably made part time causing a falling of standards.A head coach who lacks lucididty in the extreme,selectors who seem on another planet,physios who cant get players on the field,team doctors who tell players to give up & CA who continue to push T20 on the states while Test Cricket burns.Hence the Argus Review.Before the Ashes in 09,Hughes was a Bradman medallist,Steve Waugh medallist,Shield Player of the Year,in Wisden & had 1637 runs in 10 games with 8 100s at 96,all by 20 Y.O.Then came Nielsen who created the technique myth to justify Watsons inclusion.DeCosta made it clear that Hughes was forced to change his game by the coach while in the Test side.It ruined his game.Hence his success outside Test matches.

  • Looch on December 15, 2011, 23:43 GMT

    Regardless of what anybody thinks of his ability, there won't be any first class cricket for him to play over the next 7 weeks!

  • hyclass on December 15, 2011, 8:52 GMT

    For those who doubt Hughes talent,go to youtube and put in Hughes 115 v SA and Hughes 160 v SA. It shows Hughes against an 1100+ Test wicket attack in SA giving a masterclass. That attack was Steyn,Ntini,Morkel,Kallis & Harris.For those with powers of observation,it will be easy to see the difference in his technique from then to the 09 Ashes where he was apparently,'found out'.I continue to marvel at the ill will and lack of genuine investigation into whats taken place. Harmison wasnt in the same league. Intelligent people will know that fast bowlers of the calibre of Steyn,dont need the 500 balls they bowled at Hughes in his dual century Test match,to work him out. Its incredible to think that people still fall for that myth. Hughes technique was deliberately butchered by Nielsen to justify his original Ashes selection of Watson.DeCosta alludes to it on this site.Langer was even worse.@AidanFX & Barnsey444 are 2 of the few who have grasped this.He has 17 100s & 4 scores in the 190s.

  • PoorConfusedKiwi on December 15, 2011, 4:27 GMT

    So... someone help me out here, I'm struggling to understand this...

    The aging Simon Katich is dropped in favour of the more youthful Phillip Hughes. Since then, Hughes averages 27 in the 370-odd days since, while Katich averaged 49 in the 370-odd days before. Hmmm...

    Isn't Chris Martin older than Simon Katich, the aging Simon Katich who was replaced with the youthful Phillip Hughes, the young Hughes who became Martin's little rag-doll in the past two tests?

  • dsig3 on December 15, 2011, 3:48 GMT

    He will be back. The guy has scored too many runs in both County and domestic cricket. I agree, if you look at him bat it doesnt make sense but he can bat. When he comes back he will flay attacks near and far. He has plenty of time.

  • Stevo_ on December 15, 2011, 2:53 GMT

    The kid can bat nearly 5500 FCr uns @48 , just needs to get his confidence and his mental game back. He will score some big runs for Australia at some point.

  • waughjunior on December 15, 2011, 2:37 GMT

    Wrong move Hughes, you should have played the BBL and regained your confidence in slashing the ball behind point again.

  • goldendan on December 15, 2011, 2:05 GMT

    Unusual that Coverdale would say "since Simon Katich was dumped... Hughes has averaged 27.69". Hughes' 2011 average is 26.93 and his 2010 average is 28.00. Furthermore, if we exclude one match from Durban, his 2009 average is 28.14. My point is that there seems to be a lot of talk about Hughes being out of form. However, in terms of his recent performance, he is doing about as well as we should anticipate - he is performing at his average. One should not expect Hughes to perform much better than he is currently.

  • AidanFX on December 15, 2011, 1:26 GMT

    @ Nerk - your summary on Hughes is about the best I've heard - for the most part people who talk about him are just repeating one another in circular fashions. "Putting the cut in the cupboard until his eye in" is a smart assessment - Hughes got caught cutting after having been dropped in the slip after they packed a ring of about 8 slips. The reality is captains can only afford to have such fields for a very short period of the game. And as Hughes gets his eye - he will be good enough to play the cut shot despite how many fielders are there. The guy needs to just worry about to play and leave as you say.

  • hyclass on December 16, 2011, 11:51 GMT

    I thought it judicious to add a list of those changes & criticisms that have been levelled at Hughes game,either by the public,so-called experts or coaches.They read as follows: He scores to heavily on the offside.He should play more to the on.He should get behind the ball more.He should eschew his favourite cut & cover drives. He plays too square, he plays too fine.Hes too flashy.He should be more circumpsect like an opener.He should play straighter.He gets found out by the short ball.His techniches no good.Hes too jumpy.He should stop moving his back foot to leg.If this all sounds ugly,it damned well should & Australians should be ashamed to put their names to these statements.His back foot to leg closed his front shoulder.This put him in excellent position for offside and straight play.It also game him drive,power & timing into his shots.His closed faced grip,kept the ball on the ground,covered swing and aided flat batting & controlling short balls.These changes were forced on him.

  • hyclass on December 16, 2011, 11:41 GMT

    It should occurr to intelligent people,that players over the last 2-3 years have come into the Test side in form & fallen away drastically.This applies to virtually every cricketer in the side.It is replete with batting & bowling coaches who cant teach,fielding coaches inexplicably made part time causing a falling of standards.A head coach who lacks lucididty in the extreme,selectors who seem on another planet,physios who cant get players on the field,team doctors who tell players to give up & CA who continue to push T20 on the states while Test Cricket burns.Hence the Argus Review.Before the Ashes in 09,Hughes was a Bradman medallist,Steve Waugh medallist,Shield Player of the Year,in Wisden & had 1637 runs in 10 games with 8 100s at 96,all by 20 Y.O.Then came Nielsen who created the technique myth to justify Watsons inclusion.DeCosta made it clear that Hughes was forced to change his game by the coach while in the Test side.It ruined his game.Hence his success outside Test matches.

  • Looch on December 15, 2011, 23:43 GMT

    Regardless of what anybody thinks of his ability, there won't be any first class cricket for him to play over the next 7 weeks!

  • hyclass on December 15, 2011, 8:52 GMT

    For those who doubt Hughes talent,go to youtube and put in Hughes 115 v SA and Hughes 160 v SA. It shows Hughes against an 1100+ Test wicket attack in SA giving a masterclass. That attack was Steyn,Ntini,Morkel,Kallis & Harris.For those with powers of observation,it will be easy to see the difference in his technique from then to the 09 Ashes where he was apparently,'found out'.I continue to marvel at the ill will and lack of genuine investigation into whats taken place. Harmison wasnt in the same league. Intelligent people will know that fast bowlers of the calibre of Steyn,dont need the 500 balls they bowled at Hughes in his dual century Test match,to work him out. Its incredible to think that people still fall for that myth. Hughes technique was deliberately butchered by Nielsen to justify his original Ashes selection of Watson.DeCosta alludes to it on this site.Langer was even worse.@AidanFX & Barnsey444 are 2 of the few who have grasped this.He has 17 100s & 4 scores in the 190s.

  • PoorConfusedKiwi on December 15, 2011, 4:27 GMT

    So... someone help me out here, I'm struggling to understand this...

    The aging Simon Katich is dropped in favour of the more youthful Phillip Hughes. Since then, Hughes averages 27 in the 370-odd days since, while Katich averaged 49 in the 370-odd days before. Hmmm...

    Isn't Chris Martin older than Simon Katich, the aging Simon Katich who was replaced with the youthful Phillip Hughes, the young Hughes who became Martin's little rag-doll in the past two tests?

  • dsig3 on December 15, 2011, 3:48 GMT

    He will be back. The guy has scored too many runs in both County and domestic cricket. I agree, if you look at him bat it doesnt make sense but he can bat. When he comes back he will flay attacks near and far. He has plenty of time.

  • Stevo_ on December 15, 2011, 2:53 GMT

    The kid can bat nearly 5500 FCr uns @48 , just needs to get his confidence and his mental game back. He will score some big runs for Australia at some point.

  • waughjunior on December 15, 2011, 2:37 GMT

    Wrong move Hughes, you should have played the BBL and regained your confidence in slashing the ball behind point again.

  • goldendan on December 15, 2011, 2:05 GMT

    Unusual that Coverdale would say "since Simon Katich was dumped... Hughes has averaged 27.69". Hughes' 2011 average is 26.93 and his 2010 average is 28.00. Furthermore, if we exclude one match from Durban, his 2009 average is 28.14. My point is that there seems to be a lot of talk about Hughes being out of form. However, in terms of his recent performance, he is doing about as well as we should anticipate - he is performing at his average. One should not expect Hughes to perform much better than he is currently.

  • AidanFX on December 15, 2011, 1:26 GMT

    @ Nerk - your summary on Hughes is about the best I've heard - for the most part people who talk about him are just repeating one another in circular fashions. "Putting the cut in the cupboard until his eye in" is a smart assessment - Hughes got caught cutting after having been dropped in the slip after they packed a ring of about 8 slips. The reality is captains can only afford to have such fields for a very short period of the game. And as Hughes gets his eye - he will be good enough to play the cut shot despite how many fielders are there. The guy needs to just worry about to play and leave as you say.

  • Jimmers on December 15, 2011, 1:15 GMT

    I don't think he'll ever do well against quality bowling. He might make a few runs against lower ranked teams and probably ought to do well against India, but fast, aggressive, thinking bowlers will continue to have him for breakfast. Shame, I like to see unorthodox players come through despite all the attempts to turn out identikit robots. I agree with most other people here though - a season or two in England will sharpen his technique up, if the selectors feel he's worth the investment.

  • TontonZolaMoukoko on December 15, 2011, 0:46 GMT

    hhillbumper - Bang go Phil Hughes' stumps? I've not seen that this Aussie summer! Personally I don't think he'll ever be good enough for test cricket, but it's good to see that he's going to put his all into trying to succeed in it. I suppose it depends whether you value money or prestige more, but no player who ever performed in T20 only will ever be consider a great of the game.

  • hhillbumper on December 14, 2011, 21:55 GMT

    Please don't drop him.It has become the sound of the australian summer.Bwoler lets the ball go as does Hughes.bang goes the stumps.Aussie fans call for him to be dropped. He can be a world class opener according to Jonesey 2.so thats a good clue how bad he must be

  • Nerk on December 14, 2011, 21:10 GMT

    The problem is the focus on technique. Hughes does not need to change his technique. He needs to learn which balls to play, and which balls to leave. He needs to make the jump from state cricket to test cricket. He has ironed out his short game, now his off side game needs to be looked at. Perhaps putting the cut in the cupboard until his eye is in is better advice than trying to change the batsman he is. Discipline should be his watchword. And he needs time... maybe just playing Shield cricket (if that is going to exist after the BBL) to iron out these things away from the hardest arena of all.

  • OhhhMattyMatty on December 14, 2011, 20:21 GMT

    John Dyson probably couldn't believe his luck! LOL! He wouldn't have got picked anyway! The only Test batsman in world cricket who'd bat below Chris Martin!

  • zico123 on December 14, 2011, 20:16 GMT

    Wrong move, he's made for T20...slash at everything Hughesy, he can win big IPL contract

  • Peterincanada on December 14, 2011, 18:19 GMT

    @lovinit - A bit harsh there. We've had a lot who were not as good as Hughes. For a small sample I give you Paul Hibbert, Ken Eastwood, Ian Davis, Wally Edwards and the late great selector Andrew Hilditch.

  • lovinit on December 14, 2011, 15:25 GMT

    Im sorry but Hughes is probably the worst Test opener Australia has ever had - He has no technique against the new ball - well with no confidence anyway. He has had so many opportunities, he would of been dumped long ago in the old regime of things. All the test teams know he weakness outside the off stump and if NZ can get him out 4/4 in the same way all the other teams are lining up to bowl at him. At present he is literally a walking wicket. My advise to him is stick to whats hes good at 20/20 and try to get a place inthe ODIs

  • eyballfallenout on December 14, 2011, 14:08 GMT

    @ randyoz, agree with that, would love to see him come back like haydos did and i recon he will do it.

  • Barnesy4444 on December 14, 2011, 12:23 GMT

    Hughes needs to get away from the newspapers and endless opinions about his batting. He will be back beter than ever, but don't expect that to be within the next 12 months or so. He needs to score 500 runs in the remainder of the shield season, dominate county season, then score 500 the first half of next shield season. All of these runs need to be made with his new technique. He should have been left alone in 2009 when he was scoring lots of runs, not dropped and his technique forced to be changed.

  • AidanFX on December 14, 2011, 12:19 GMT

    I'd like to see Hughes sign another contract with a county team next Eng summer. I'd also like to see NSW more willing to put him in the shorter formats. People actually see Hughes as only a Test type player - but he actually has in the past done well at One Dayers and 20/20 - I think the guy has a great temperament ideal for the national Test squad. But I also think MOST of his problems HAVE NOT been technique but mental. He has to learn to get over the media pressure and I think he is if you will "trying too hard" - thinking too much about what he is trying to do. The guy is a raw freak. He played a shot in the a past Champions League - (made 80 I think) where he received just about the perfect yorker - can't remember the bowler - I just remember the shot and the player. He hit it off the face off the bat all along the ground - square - to the boundary when the field was spread. Can't do that without raw talent.

  • AidanFX on December 14, 2011, 12:09 GMT

    Hughes - look at some school boy footage - go back to that technique; it works for you - the hybrid technique doesn't work. Ignore the various schizophrenic voices you have put up with the past 2 1/2 yrs.

  • pikk0n on December 14, 2011, 11:54 GMT

    Have to admire his commitment but his form was actually better when he was still playing all 3 forms of the game. His form really dipped when he started concentrating on just first class cricket. You've got to wonder if the international coaching panel is the reason for his decision here. Hughes is definitely fit enough to play in all forms of cricket all throughout the year. No reason to just concentrate on one form. I hope to see him in one dayers and T20s more often. It'll help him regain the hopelessly lost form.

  • RandyOZ on December 14, 2011, 11:44 GMT

    Make no mistake Hugsey is a future star opener, but he just need to do a Haydos and spend a couple years in shield ironing things out. We can't all be Ricky Ponting, brilliant from day dot!

  • CricketingStargazer on December 14, 2011, 10:59 GMT

    Bestbuddy, dont you believe it! In CC1 he will be playing against Test or near Test-strength attacks every week. Some experts even argue that a side like Durham is putting out an attackweek after week that is even stronger than the current England Test attack. You won't get that normally in Australian domestic cricket.

  • Matt. on December 14, 2011, 9:25 GMT

    Wrong move, he's made for T20...slash at everything Hughesy. Make a buck in the IPL!

  • bestbuddy on December 14, 2011, 9:25 GMT

    If he really wants to find some first class form maybe he should try to organise a short term contract with one of the South African franchises. They play four first class games over the next month. The warriors in particular are struggling with their top order, and playing some first class cricket in the winelands of SA might be just the solution to his form and relief from the pressure he is currently under. Also, his contract with Worchestershire will surely help him in the long run; I think a major part of Aus'srecent issue with swing it that few if any of their test side have played/are playing county cricket. The standard is probably slightly diluted compared to Aus's first class comp, but the different pitches and bowlers can only help to develop their game. Just look at how Langer, Hayden, Martyn, Bevan, both Hussey's, etc all had at least one full season in country cricket; the current squad only has Mike Hussey with more than a dozen first class games in county cricket

  • D-Train on December 14, 2011, 9:22 GMT

    Considering he's going to get dropped, all this means is he's going to be playing club cricket while the Big Bash is on.

  • CricketingStargazer on December 14, 2011, 8:52 GMT

    It's interesting that now we are talking about his weakness against the off stump. In 2009 first Steve Harmison (on probably the flatest pitch that Australia saw all tou,r where the side racked up a huge total) and then Andrew Flintoff in the first two Tests made Phil Hughes look so insecure against the short ball that he was summarily replaced as opener by Shane Watson for the rest of the series. Since that amazing start in South Africa he has been found out by attack after attack. Since those first two Tests he averages under 28, the sort of numbers that Australians used to use to mock England players picked against them: that points to something deeper than a minor problem of flashing.

  • Marcio on December 14, 2011, 8:46 GMT

    This is a smart long term move. If he went into the BBL his technique would only get worse with all the slogging. He knows he is going to get dropped, but he is telling everyone where his priorities are. These are the sort of players we need. I for one am hoping he works through his technique problem. At 22 he has plenty of time. It's a pity he didn't score a few runs in the NZ series to retain his place, as the Indian attack would have been much to his liking. Barring some Hobart-like wickets, I can't see India taking 20 wickets on a regular basis in Australia, especially if Zaheer doesn't make it, and assuming AUS pick in form players. All these injuries are a worry though. too many players without match fitness.

  • Mary_786 on December 14, 2011, 7:34 GMT

    Hughes wasn't good enough to actually make a Sydney Thunder playing XI anyway. with Warner Gayle and Khawaja there. Hughes has too many flaws in his game to come back before 1-2 years, he needs some serious work on his batting.

  • DAHSUT on December 14, 2011, 7:15 GMT

    great ,but i think he could have improved his batting and also proved himself by scoring runs in the bbl i think that he is a sure future aus opener n also think that watson will get sacked after the india tests

  • Dashgar on December 14, 2011, 7:09 GMT

    Good luck with that Hughes, but I think you'll find CA will force you to play it anyway. Just look at Ed Cowan

  • Every_run_is_important on December 14, 2011, 7:02 GMT

    In a way Hughes is a bit unlucky to have played South Africa and New Zealand before the India series. None of the Indian bowlers are accurate enough to work on Hughes weakness consistently and this would have allowed Hughes to score big against the Indians. Only the batters can save India by scoring big. I don't see Indian bowlers taking 20 wickets in each of the 4 Tests...

  • zenboomerang on December 14, 2011, 6:35 GMT

    So Hughes pulls out of a match that Warner will play in... Not real smart... Selectors have got to have players shove their faces in front of them by performing & getting noticed regularly to get picked for the national teams... Then Warner will captain the Chairman's XI knowing that his form will get him a start for the 1st Test & probably the whole summer in all forms of the game... What this tells the opposition is that Hughes is mentally fragile atm & can be easily exploited with the right bowling attacks... As an opener you should be fighting & moving forward - not running away...

  • sahajb on December 14, 2011, 6:34 GMT

    the way i read this artical, i think huges has just withdrawn from one BB match and not the team itself. i think its the authur of this artical has assumed that he is done for the season. if he doesnt get picked for tests he will go back to the thunder

  • Rahul_78 on December 14, 2011, 6:09 GMT

    I do not understand this recent trend of English and Aussie cricketers to ditch one format of cricket in favor of another. Irony of the situation is Hughes is most probably going to be replaced by Warner who is a legitimate T20 product. Any struggling batsmen in cricket basically needs runs in the middle irrespective of which format they have been scored in otherwise Warner wouldnt have been playing for OZ. Even though Hughes scores a 100 in a tour game I find it difficult for him to make place in the final XI if Watson comes back to the team. At the moment it seems like Hughes is grasping at the last straws to save his international career but choices he is making seems to be product of confused and desperate mind.

  • bahriank on December 14, 2011, 6:00 GMT

    When Hughes said that "he can't wait to face indian bowlers", is he trying to be sarcastic? Indians bowlers are not that bad you know, lol.

  • Ben1989 on December 14, 2011, 5:51 GMT

    have to applaud his move here, he's showing the want to play test cricket which is what we need in this world of T20... this is a positive move & I hope by start of next summer after his stint in county cricket too, he might be back in the team & would've solved his issue outside off, even if he goes back to grade cricket, all the bowlers are going to know where his issue is, so whilst it won't be as testing for him, he's still going to be probed in that area from half decent bowlers & in turn should still be able to learn a little... good luck mate, hope to see you back in a year or so with the runs flowing, certainly have the potential!!!

  • Ozcricketwriter on December 14, 2011, 5:44 GMT

    Hughes wasn't good enough to actually make a Sydney Thunder playing XI anyway. Good move for him but about as meaningful as Michael Clarke announcing he wouldn't participate in the IPL.

  • jonesy2 on December 14, 2011, 5:32 GMT

    good on him. whats the bet he absolutely carves up the indian bowlers in the chairmans game

  • Daps277 on December 14, 2011, 5:18 GMT

    Move in the right direction for Hughes, hopefully selectors show some faith and pick him for the boxing day test and based on his performance decide on his future involvement with the side!! and am not saying this because he is from NSW. My test XI Hughes, Warner, Ponting, Watson, Clarke, Hussey, Haddin, Siddle, Pattinson, Harris/Starc, Lyon.

  • landl47 on December 14, 2011, 5:17 GMT

    This is a bit of a silly decision by Hughes. Assuming Watson is fit, he's going to be dropped anyway, whatever he does in the single 3-day match available. That will mean he won't play any serious cricket until February, besides giving up the BBL money. I appreciate his commitment, but this isn't a sensible move for him.

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  • landl47 on December 14, 2011, 5:17 GMT

    This is a bit of a silly decision by Hughes. Assuming Watson is fit, he's going to be dropped anyway, whatever he does in the single 3-day match available. That will mean he won't play any serious cricket until February, besides giving up the BBL money. I appreciate his commitment, but this isn't a sensible move for him.

  • Daps277 on December 14, 2011, 5:18 GMT

    Move in the right direction for Hughes, hopefully selectors show some faith and pick him for the boxing day test and based on his performance decide on his future involvement with the side!! and am not saying this because he is from NSW. My test XI Hughes, Warner, Ponting, Watson, Clarke, Hussey, Haddin, Siddle, Pattinson, Harris/Starc, Lyon.

  • jonesy2 on December 14, 2011, 5:32 GMT

    good on him. whats the bet he absolutely carves up the indian bowlers in the chairmans game

  • Ozcricketwriter on December 14, 2011, 5:44 GMT

    Hughes wasn't good enough to actually make a Sydney Thunder playing XI anyway. Good move for him but about as meaningful as Michael Clarke announcing he wouldn't participate in the IPL.

  • Ben1989 on December 14, 2011, 5:51 GMT

    have to applaud his move here, he's showing the want to play test cricket which is what we need in this world of T20... this is a positive move & I hope by start of next summer after his stint in county cricket too, he might be back in the team & would've solved his issue outside off, even if he goes back to grade cricket, all the bowlers are going to know where his issue is, so whilst it won't be as testing for him, he's still going to be probed in that area from half decent bowlers & in turn should still be able to learn a little... good luck mate, hope to see you back in a year or so with the runs flowing, certainly have the potential!!!

  • bahriank on December 14, 2011, 6:00 GMT

    When Hughes said that "he can't wait to face indian bowlers", is he trying to be sarcastic? Indians bowlers are not that bad you know, lol.

  • Rahul_78 on December 14, 2011, 6:09 GMT

    I do not understand this recent trend of English and Aussie cricketers to ditch one format of cricket in favor of another. Irony of the situation is Hughes is most probably going to be replaced by Warner who is a legitimate T20 product. Any struggling batsmen in cricket basically needs runs in the middle irrespective of which format they have been scored in otherwise Warner wouldnt have been playing for OZ. Even though Hughes scores a 100 in a tour game I find it difficult for him to make place in the final XI if Watson comes back to the team. At the moment it seems like Hughes is grasping at the last straws to save his international career but choices he is making seems to be product of confused and desperate mind.

  • sahajb on December 14, 2011, 6:34 GMT

    the way i read this artical, i think huges has just withdrawn from one BB match and not the team itself. i think its the authur of this artical has assumed that he is done for the season. if he doesnt get picked for tests he will go back to the thunder

  • zenboomerang on December 14, 2011, 6:35 GMT

    So Hughes pulls out of a match that Warner will play in... Not real smart... Selectors have got to have players shove their faces in front of them by performing & getting noticed regularly to get picked for the national teams... Then Warner will captain the Chairman's XI knowing that his form will get him a start for the 1st Test & probably the whole summer in all forms of the game... What this tells the opposition is that Hughes is mentally fragile atm & can be easily exploited with the right bowling attacks... As an opener you should be fighting & moving forward - not running away...

  • Every_run_is_important on December 14, 2011, 7:02 GMT

    In a way Hughes is a bit unlucky to have played South Africa and New Zealand before the India series. None of the Indian bowlers are accurate enough to work on Hughes weakness consistently and this would have allowed Hughes to score big against the Indians. Only the batters can save India by scoring big. I don't see Indian bowlers taking 20 wickets in each of the 4 Tests...