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Cosgrove returns to South Australia

Brydon Coverdale

April 9, 2014

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Mark Cosgrove scored his fourth consecutive fifty, reaching 58 on the first day, Tasmania v Queensland, Sheffield Shield final, 1st day, Hobart, March 22, 2013
Mark Cosgrove has been a prolific run scorer during his four seasons with Tasmania © Getty Images
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Players/Officials: Mark Cosgrove

Batsman Mark Cosgrove will return to play for South Australia next summer, four years after he was axed by the state and subsequently moved to Tasmania. Cosgrove, 29, was offered a two-year contract extension by Tasmania but declined, and the state said it was believed Cosgrove wanted to move back to Adelaide "for personal reasons and to be closer to family and friends".

Cosgrove has been a prolific run scorer for the Tigers since moving south. He topped the Sheffield Shield run tally in 2010-11, his first season with Tasmania, and was second only to state team-mate Ricky Ponting last summer. In total, Cosgrove has made 2514 Sheffield Shield runs at 40.54 in his four seasons with Tasmania, and helped them to Shield titles in 2011-12 and 2012-13.

When Cosgrove was cut by the Redbacks after the 2009-10 season, the SACA high performance manager Jamie Cox said that South Australia had worked hard with Cosgrove, "but the unfortunate reality is that we were unable to help him fulfil his full potential". However, in his last summer with South Australia Cosgrove had averaged more than 40 in both the four-day and one-day competitions.

In announcing Cosgrove's return, Cox said: "With Tom Cooper, Callum Ferguson and Phil Hughes all enjoying stellar seasons with the bat, it is exciting to add another experienced head to the mix. He has been part of a very successful team at the Tigers over the last few years. After falling agonisingly short in the Sheffield Shield last year, it is hoped that he can bring some of that experience to the Redbacks."

During Cosgrove's time with the Redbacks, the state's officials often became frustrated at his inability to keep his weight down. After he was axed by South Australia, Cosgrove told ESPNcricinfo that "Adelaide being a one-paper city and with people at the SACA saying stuff, it was hard", but five years and with Darren Berry now the state's coach, he has decided to move home.

"Mark was an integral part of the Tigers team over the past four seasons" Andrew Dykes, the general manager of cricket with Cricket Tasmania, said. "Mark's skill with the bat at the top of the order was a big contributor to Tasmania's 2010/11 and 2012/13 Sheffield Shield wins."

Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

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Posted by Barnesy4444 on (April 13, 2014, 9:31 GMT)

Good to have an actual South Australian back here. Our current side is literally full of interstate players with only 2-3 from SA. He could be a part of SA top/middle order for another 6 years. No need to worry about length of contracts if the player actually wants to be here.

Posted by HatsforBats on (April 12, 2014, 12:36 GMT)

The most enlightening piece of information (for me) in this article is that Cosgrove is 29. It seems just yesterday that he was in his mid-20's and looking like a future test no. 4. I always assumed his clear talent & potential would translate with ease to a career to rival our recent best. Sadly he has continued in his consistent inconsistency, all the while failing to address the issues that clearly prohibit national selectors from rewarding him the honour.

Posted by Jeremy303 on (April 11, 2014, 13:33 GMT)

During the Ashes in England last year, I was honestly thinking that he would be Rogers' replacement in the Test side before or after the SA tour. Fast forward to the present and, well, it's another season of if's and buts for poor Cossie. Is he playing county this winter? You'd have to think that he's only got a couple of seasons left to break into the the test team. Terrible shame though. He should've been in the squad for the past decade.

Posted by   on (April 10, 2014, 22:19 GMT)

Well he had his worst summer in years this year, redeemed by a ton in the last game of the year, he was preffered as Jordan Silk's opening partner to Ed Cowan who played at 3 all summer.

Moving to SA you'd have to imagine he's banking on Phil Hughes being in the Test squad a lot because otherwise he's hard to get in there with Phil and Michaeld Klinger doing so well.

Had a feeling he'd leave Tassie though with Silk's rise. Agree with everyone he should get a look in at the test side, better career stats than several who have, including three Tasmanian batsmen who have got test caps in recent years.

Posted by   on (April 10, 2014, 8:51 GMT)

SA did the same to Ryan Harris and who has ever heard of him again - only Wisdens, Ausiies and Qld.

Posted by on (April 10, 2014, 2:12 GMT)

Cox shouldn't be allowed near cricket teams.

It is not a coincidence that South Australia and Australia have suffered while he has had his head in the mix.

Posted by Rooboy on (April 10, 2014, 0:51 GMT)

Wish we had have kept Cossie and booted Cox a few years ago instead ...

Posted by Gordo85 on (April 9, 2014, 15:06 GMT)

Good on you Mark Cosgrove. South Australia will welcome you back with open arms for sure mate. I am like the two posts above me talking about how they can't understand why Cosgrove never gets a look in to the Test side. The most frustrating thing to me is when you hear commentators and people involved in Cricket saying "But the problem is there isn't anybody else to replace these players who keep on failing" I hear that and I go through the roof and can't believe people are saying such stupid things without even really thinking of who would be in contention, for some reason most of the time they never say names or if they do they never mention Mark Cosgrove's name at all which is shocking. My only concern with Cosgrove is at Tasmania he was opening nearly all the time and I would prefer to see him move down the order a little since I think he was at his best when he wasn't opening so hopefully that happens at South Australia now. He is still young enough to play Tests, not his fault.

Posted by ZCFOutkast on (April 9, 2014, 14:23 GMT)

I still don't understand why he hasn't been an option for the Test side, let alone the A side.

Posted by   on (April 9, 2014, 10:26 GMT)

Another prime example of those in charge trying to run cricket like Aussie Rules. Watch the games, analyse the stats ... isn't that what high performance managers should do? Both Cossie and Bollinger have been victims of this perception before performance HR modern sports management disease. Thank the Gods for Boof and his common sense and cricket experience!

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Brydon CoverdaleClose
Brydon Coverdale Assistant Editor Possibly the only person to win a headline-writing award for a title with the word "heifers" in it, Brydon decided agricultural journalism wasn't for him when he took up his position with ESPNcricinfo in Melbourne. His cricketing career peaked with an unbeaten 85 in the seconds for a small team in rural Victoria on a day when they could not scrounge up 11 players and Brydon, tragically, ran out of partners to help him reach his century. He is also a compulsive TV game-show contestant and has appeared on half a dozen shows in Australia.
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