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Haddin back in training after tough few months

Daniel Brettig

August 2, 2012

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Brad Haddin has a bat in the nets, Adelaide, January 23, 2012
Brad Haddin will be available for national selection this summer © Getty Images
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Brad Haddin is back in pre-season training with New South Wales and is available for national selection during the home summer, starting with the first Test against South Africa at the Gabba in November.

Following a difficult off-season in which Haddin flew home abruptly from the West Indies in order to be with his seriously ill daughter, Mia, the wicketkeeper and sometime Australian Test vice-captain has turned his attention back to cricket and been a welcome addition to the Blues' preparations for the new season following their own summer of discontent in 2011-12.

While the Victorian gloveman Matthew Wade acquitted himself ably in the Caribbean Tests that Haddin was absent from, he struggled in the subsequent ODI series against England in the UK, having difficulty with the ball moving after it passed the bat and also battling to cope with the high standard of the home bowling attack.

These reverses have added weight to Haddin's case for inclusion in the Test side at the start of the home summer, provided he can prove his readiness with a string of good performances for New South Wales in the Sheffield Shield fixtures that will serve as a precursor to the South Africa Tests.

It was also felt that Australia missed Haddin's presence in the dressing room, as a doughty campaigner and leader with a strong record of individual success against England over the past two Ashes series, even if the team stumbled to defeats in each case. Michael Clarke, the Test captain, remains a vocal supporter of Haddin, and even suggested in the West Indies that Wade may be considered as a specialist batsman to accommodate the senior man's return.

Haddin retained his Cricket Australia contract when the slimmed-down list was released in June, and in July it was announced that he had re-signed with the Sydney Sixers in the BBL. His presence around the Blues squad is another reminder that he is on the way back, with an eye on lining up at the Gabba.

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

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Posted by MattyP1979 on (August 5, 2012, 18:51 GMT)

It seems from an outsider's POV CA don't really know who is their best WK is. I for one think Haddin is probably the best I have seen of the crop, and brings an old head to the table. Wade might be the way forward though. Wk is always an extremly difficult pos to fill so good luck to them.

Posted by RednWhiteArmy on (August 5, 2012, 10:03 GMT)

Lucky he plays for australia cos he certainly isnt good enough for test cricket in any other country....I know theres a serious lack of talent in australia so he might have a chance

Posted by   on (August 5, 2012, 4:40 GMT)

at least get some games under your belt. haddin is a good cricketer, adds a little fire in the aussie belly.

Posted by Beertjie on (August 2, 2012, 22:19 GMT)

Wholeheartedly endorse your comments @ManlyHorse. Paine had been touted as captaincy material some years back, so there's no reason at all for preferring Haddin to him. Let's hope sentiment can be cast aside this summer or the Ashes will remain where they are.

Posted by Behind_the_bowlers_arm on (August 2, 2012, 20:18 GMT)

Wade or Paine are the Test options as keeper for mine. Haddin should be told that if he plays for his state as a batsman and makes heaps of runs .... he is in the mix for the middle order. Unlikely at his age but Australia's top 6 is in such a state of flux several places are up for grabs.

Posted by   on (August 2, 2012, 14:22 GMT)

Why would we put Haddin back into the test team! His time is over, Wade is much younger, had way more potential and is already performing better!

Posted by Okakaboka on (August 2, 2012, 14:12 GMT)

What a ridiculous article... Suggesting Haddin return to the national Team. Hey, Nevill is a better keeper AND Batsman so by right, he shouldn't even make the NSW team. Even the selectors at their grade cricket team knows this. Wade was on his first tour of England ...and yes, he struggled. But he struggled at the start of the West Indies tour then improved. The statistic that in the end 'nails' the argument is the bye count. Wade has murdered Haddin and Paine in this regard. At the end of the day, we have 3 good keepers (Wade, Paine,Nevill). I would suggest Wade is the one that has the potential to be...um...not great...but very very good. Um, this is better than being a butterfingered bye letter go who needs a long stop!

Posted by Dashgar on (August 2, 2012, 12:55 GMT)

I think it's gonna be tough for Haddin to get back into team. Pete Neville had a great year last year. Of course that's just to get back into the NSW team, as for the Australia team he's at best 4th in line now after Wade, Paine and Neville.

Posted by RyanHarrisGreatCricketer on (August 2, 2012, 12:46 GMT)

as greg chappell , proven performers deserve one chance too many rather than one chance too less. Wade might be good, but i think he is a bit unpolished for tests and haddin who was anyways going to play tests in wi deserves to be lined up for the entire summer at least and a few matches in india next year unless he fails terribly. He is an asset at 7 and his keeping was steady during the indian test series so please dont burden this gritty man

Posted by ozziefan08 on (August 2, 2012, 10:43 GMT)

Seriously? How can Haddin even be considered? His home summer was worse than poor and warranted getting dropped the whole way through the India series. He will be 35 by the time the first test at the Gabba is played. The NSP need to stick with Wade, give him valuable experience against the best side in the world. If Haddin does get a recall then I wont be following this summer.

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Daniel Brettig Assistant editor Daniel Brettig had been a journalist for eight years when he joined ESPNcricinfo, but his fascination with cricket dates back to the early 1990s, when his dad helped him sneak into the family lounge room to watch the end of day-night World Series matches well past bedtime. Unapologetically passionate about indie music and the South Australian Redbacks, Daniel's chief cricketing achievement was to dismiss Wisden Almanack editor Lawrence Booth in the 2010 Ashes press match in Perth - a rare Australian victory that summer.
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