Finch named Australia's T20 captain
Aaron Finch has been named as Australia's new Twenty20 captain, succeeding George Bailey, who stepped down from the role on Sunday. Finch, 27, will become the seventh man to lead Australia's T20 team when they take on Pakistan in a one-off match in Dubai on October 5.
As captain of the Melbourne Renegades for the past two Big Bash League campaigns, Finch has acquired plenty of T20 captaincy experience, and he has also led the Pune Warriors in the IPL. The No.1-ranked T20 international batsman in the world, Finch also led Australia A against the England Lions last year and the selectors were pleased with his performance.
"When George indicated that he was stepping down from the position, we thought Aaron was the obvious choice to succeed him," Rod Marsh, the national selector, said. "We know he will relish the opportunity to lead his country.
"He has a task ahead of him. He is taking on a young side that is currently ranked fifth in the world. His first challenge will be building consistent performances as they head towards the ICC World Twenty20 in 2016."
On Sunday, Bailey endorsed Finch as a potential successor, describing him as the kind of player who thrives on the leadership. Finch said he was looking forward to leading his country for the first time.
"Having the honour to captain your country in any form of the game is something that all young cricketers dream about," Finch said. "It came as a big surprise but it was a very nice phone call to receive from Rod Marsh. I never imagined when captaining in the past that it would lead to national responsibilities.
"I've just set out to be the best player that I can and luckily an opportunity like this has come my way. I have been fortunate enough to play under some fantastic captains, including Michael Clarke and George Bailey and I have learnt a lot from them. It goes without saying that I will do my utmost in this role as we lead into the ICC World T20 in about eighteen months' time. It's going to be very exciting."
Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. @brydoncoverdale