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In his blog on the Guardian website, Dileep Premachandran looks at Australia A's tour to India and says it's unlike other similar contests, with many players in with a chance to make it the to the face-off between the senior sides later in the year.
A team games not involving Hannibal, BA Baracus, Murdock and Face tend to be pretty mundane affairs. Fans weaned on a steady diet of international cricket tend to treat them as a Premier League supporter does a League One game, and the players themselves are motivated by different things. For the young and ambitious teenager, it's a chance to press his claim to be the next Tendulkar, Ponting or Wasim. These days though, with U-19 games and tournaments so common, many of these tyros take the escalator straight to the top, ignoring the A team staircase altogether. For most on the wrong side of 25, unless you're an Australian with the initials MEKH, the A team call-up is usually a sop, a reward for steady domestic performances for those who lack the X-factor that separates the merely good from the exceptional.