County news

Now or never again for Rogers

Alex Winter

April 9, 2013

Comments: 85 | Text size: A | A

Chris Rogers closed in on a century, Middlesex v Sussex, County Championship, Division One, Lord's, 2nd day, May 31, 2012
Chris Rogers has been prolific in every season he has played in England © PA Photos

Arthur Coningham, Ken Eastwood, Mick Malone. Three names that are part of a club that Chris Rogers is in danger of joining: the Australian one-Test wonders.

All three enjoyed fine first-class careers but were never given the chance on the international stage. At 35 it is quite perceivable that Rogers will end his career with the same footnote.

It will be quite puzzling if Rogers never plays another Test. He was considered good enough to break into the Australian side, then the world's No. 1, in 2008, but four years later continues to be overlooked for a side struggling for runs.

Rogers reels off the names of players preferred to him since his only Test in Perth. None of them get close to his near-19,000 first-class runs at a shade under 50.

"It has always felt like there's always been someone else who has come in to take that available spot," Rogers told ESPNcricinfo. "Whether it's a Katich or a Cowan or a Hughes. There's always been someone else. It all comes down to opportunity and it would be nice to have had more than one Test to show people that I can play."

He can most certainly play. Last summer he passed 1,000 runs in an English season for the sixth time (he has passed the mark in two Australian seasons). His 1,086 runs at 40.22 led Middlesex to third place in the County Championship - their best finish since 1995.

He cannot be shouting louder in the ears of the Australian selectors. But they continue to allow his case to pass over them. They selected Rob Quiney - only five years Rogers' junior but with fifty fewer first-class centuries - against South Africa before Christmas. And he was allowed to have a go in two Tests.

Selections like Quiney's are a killer to Rogers who can do no more than keep the mobile phone charged up. "It's hard to keep getting excited about the prospect of a recall because I have waited a few years for a phone call and it hasn't come," he said. "The selectors have gone in a different direction and there are only so many times you can get your hopes up."

But maybe this summer Rogers will be too hard to ignore. Australia's top-order batting has consistently failed and a proven run-producer is sitting waiting on the shores to which they will tour. John Inverarity, the Australian chairman of selectors, has said Rogers will be seriously considered. Surely cause for positivity?

"I'm not sure if positive is the right word," Rogers said. "I think there's a chance. Guys who've had the opportunity over the past couple of years haven't really nailed their spot and that has maybe left the door a little bit ajar."

Omission from the Ashes would almost certainly bring a final slump of the shoulders from Rogers, who averages just 0.33-of-a-run below Justin Langer in first-class cricket.

If it is not meant to be Rogers can concentrate on helping Middlesex complete their transformation. When he joined the club in 2011, they were at a particularly low ebb having finished second-bottom of the Championship the year before. But his runs rallied them back into Division One and last season's third sees them installed as contenders for the title in 2013.

A tonic for international disappointment perhaps? "As you get older the desire to win things comes much greater and to captain a side - which two years ago was struggling - to a Championship would be something I could be very proud of. But playing for your country is still the ultimate."

Alex Winter is an editorial assistant at ESPNcricinfo

RSS Feeds: Alex Winter

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by   on (April 14, 2013, 17:13 GMT)

I too would stick with the same top 3, but with no one cemented in at 4 and no one else holding their hand up and demanding selection I think Rogers deserves a crack. Fair enough that he didn´t get a run in the team previously as there has always been the talent and experience but with the departure of Ponting and M.Hussey things have changed. Having already hit a couple of fifties to start the County championship, if he can score a couple of centuries before the first test than he must play, regardless of his age, which in any case may allow him to play two to three years of good test cricket. There´s enough young guys in there gathering experience, we also need some experience and form and someone to shepherd the likes of Warner and Hughes along the way. You´d only be leaving out Watson and he´s certainly not there to gain experience, nor is he scoring runs!

Posted by manav599 on (April 14, 2013, 14:35 GMT)

No doubt Rogers is a good batsman but his time has gone. Selecting him for the Ashes will be a huge mistake. Just a short term benefit for back to back ashes but the correct way ahead in my opinion is to stick with Warner and Hughes.

Posted by landl47 on (April 14, 2013, 6:40 GMT)

There are a few things against Rogers. His age is obviously one. He's an opening bat, of which Australia has 4 in the side already. Claims that he can bat anywhere are hopeful rather than based on evidence. He's a left-hander; Aus already has left-handers at 1, 2 and 3; Wade, Johnson, Pattinson, Starc and Khawaja are also left-handers. Against some sides that wouldn't matter, but England has Swann, who is extremely good against left-handers. He doesn't have a central contract. Since these were only handed out a few weeks ago, the selectors are going to look pretty silly if he is preferred to one of the test players (Cowan, Warner, Hughes, Watson) to whom they gave central contracts. Since he's really a top 4 batsman or nothing, it's hard to see him being picked.

David Hussey, with an even more impressive first-class record than Rogers, didn't even get one test and is now out of the picture. I can't see the selectors going down the Rogers route at this time.

Posted by Broken_F-ing_Arm on (April 13, 2013, 14:21 GMT)

to win ashes, Aus needs 6 batsmen, keeper at 7 (personally i think should be selected on batting priority, but needs good keeping skills as well) 3pace and 1 spinner.

For tests you build a side that is going to take you to next ashes series, so age doesnt matter. Out of the incumbents drop Watson as he has batted horribly in the last 2 years and him averaging less than 20 in the indian series (in which he was supposed to be one of the expierienced batmen) was dismal, plus he is not bowling. Keep Cowan (shown slow improvement + strong vice captain), Warner and Hughes (despite bad indian tour, had good summers).

For Watson replacement, Rogers as best option, could FC + county AVG. Thats 5 bats for #6 id go smith/Khawaja.

For keeper i couldnt care less. Spin - Lyon/o'keefe/ahmed Pace - pick 3 from Cummins, patto, siddle, starc bird

Posted by Beertjie on (April 13, 2013, 10:33 GMT)

Agree mostly @Raza Hyder on (April 12, 2013, 7:08 GMT) I too hope he's selected as opener (fair treatment), despite the Cowan-Warner 'understanding and success'. Hughes is the golden boy so he must play and show how good he is up the order since he sure as hell won't be good later coming in to face Swann! Since Watson has basically failed he should only go as the possible all-rounder. I'd prefer Paine and Burns, but they haven't been in the greatest form and probably England is not the place to make your debut/recall. Cummins too should be kept for the return series. Trying to get the balance of a 17 man squad right is tough. Invers should make it clear Haddin's appointment as VC is for this series only. With these factors in mind the following team/squad might be OK: Rogers, Cowan, Hughes, Clarke, Warner, Khawaja, Haddin, Starc, Pattinson, Harris, Bird. Back up: Watson, Wade, Siddle, Lyon, O'Keefe/Ahmed (if available), Faulkner/Smith (I can't decide! - they might only take 16 anyway)

Posted by Ducky610 on (April 13, 2013, 8:18 GMT)

@ScottStevo... I certainly agree with Ponting and Hussey being the better plays, but they both chose to retire (Ponting may have been pushed, which was a mistaket).... I still wish Katich was there to be honest, but right now we need some stability at the top of that batting order to give young batsman like Maddinson and Silk some time to develop in Shield cricket, And Rogers would just suit that role perfectly...

Maybe you're right that Smith has more problems against pace and swing than spin but he has still maintained an average of over 40 in the Shield this year, something few batsman did, including khawaja (buterworth, faulkner and sayers were all swinging the ball consistently).... And given he was the 2nd best performed batsman behind clarke in India I would at least give him a shot in the 1st test but bring back up..

Posted by ScottStevo on (April 12, 2013, 12:00 GMT)

I fail to see sense in suggesting that Rogers is a hardened pro, when the reality is he's played one test match, so is basically a rookie. Club cricket is a far cry from international cricket - just ask M Ramprakash! I'm not saying Rogers couldn't do a job for a year or so, just wondering why bother when we could get so much more from a player who is 25-30... @Mary_786, I hope that he gets his chance in these 2 series. He had a few tests and didn't overly impress, but a lot of guys get dropped and do far better on their second time around. What bothers me is selecting him in the squad and then sidelining the bloke. Somethings amiss here!?! If he's selected, he has to play... @kaos2, I disagree, Wade is not a fine batsman and throws his wicket away needlessly. Seems very immature to me. Looks okay for ODI/T20 pinch hitting, not tests - and certainly nowhere near 5 or 6. I'd prefer Paine, who has played in England as opener in ODI's and done well -also good with the gloves...

Posted by   on (April 12, 2013, 7:08 GMT)

I fail to see sense in suggesting Rogers is too old. He still makes runs and consistently so. As for continuity, the reintroduction of a hardened pro would only do Australia's ragged top order some good by demonstrating the basic tenets of long format batting. I'd also like to see him played in his preferred position which means one of Hughes or Warner is dropped on form. I agree with Ducky's top six except I'd swap Khawaja and Smith in the order. Am not entirely sure Hughes will prosper in England against the moving ball so it's a toss up between him and Warner going by whoever copes best in the warmups. And Harris is surely a dead cert to start if he makes it on to that boat.

Posted by Mary_786 on (April 12, 2013, 1:15 GMT)

@hyclass like you I also think Khawaja will be one of our better bats in England but 1 batsman is not enough, all 6 need to fire and we need to get them some match practice before the first game in July. The final Champions Trophy squad will be 15, taken from the current secret 30. I believe a squad size of 15 is part of the rules of the tournament, that means some of our test stars won't be in the ODIs so give them practice in the longer format.

Posted by kaos2 on (April 11, 2013, 5:45 GMT)

1st Test in England, all being fit, and assuming that the pitches will be as dry and dusty as conditions permit, my team would be

Cowan Warner Rogers Khawaja Clarke Watson Hartley Starc O'Keefe Pattinson Bird Siddle (12th)

Watson's only position of value is bowling 10 overs a day and some strong arm stuff at #6 (a la Freddie). O'Keefe is clearly our best spinner. Hartley is clearly our best keeper (Wade is a fine batsmen but his keeping is a liability. I would take him as a batting optoin and cover for Hartley). Harris and Siddle come in to contention but I would start with the pace of Pattinson, the mercurial Starc and the dependable Bird.

I don't rate Hughes (still can't believe he was protected from the Saffers) and we cannot pick Johnson again. Smith should tour after his contribution in India and Lyon must go along as well. So you've got the 12 above, plus Wade, Harris, Lyon and Smith for a squad of 16. Above all this squad has no bit players....

Posted by Ducky610 on (April 11, 2013, 2:35 GMT)

@Scott Stevo... Theres an old saying, if he's good enough he's old enough... In this case it applies in the reverse. Aside from Phil Hughes Rogers is the next most consistent batsman at domestic level and deserves a shot at international level regardless of his age. If you've ever seen him play, he is clearly a better bat than cowan, warner, khawaja, smith and watson... I agree with the 6 batsman but I ask what Smith has done wrong since his return? He look every bit a top 6 batsman in the tour match and 2 tests he played in india He certainly didnt look an allrounder when he bowled, if anything hes batsman and part time leggy.... Cowan, Rogers, Hughes, Clarke, Smith, Khawaja would be a fine top 6 with Warner returning at the expense of wichever batsman doesnt step up when he learns to control his temperament

Posted by   on (April 11, 2013, 2:15 GMT)

give him a go, as easiest it is to say, who we drop?? Watson maybe?? but then Usman deserves ago too, we need guys who are going to do well in England, its gonna swing all over place so its take good solid technical batting?really the bowlers should do well but its our batting who need to do well.

Posted by   on (April 11, 2013, 1:31 GMT)

@Dylanbrah..Although I like the Australian cricket team and want them to do well that doesnt make me delusional. The reality is that we are overdeveoped in one skill (bowling) and seriousy underdeveloped in batting. However in saying the absence of obvious talent their needs to be a wholehearted approach from whoever represents us and grafters such as Ed Cowan who fight for every run can be invaluable in such periods. Kind of like Geoff Marsh who although his overall figures werent great he was part of many vital partnerships opening the innings, first with David boon and then Mark Taylor. His counterpart amongst the bowlers is Siddle who is the heart and soul of our attack. Actually there are striking parallels to those days under Border and the current times under Clarke. And I find it infinitely more interesting following the team now than when Australia were dominating and winning every game. There will be champions revealed in this team in times to come...YOU'LL SEE!!

Posted by hycIass on (April 11, 2013, 0:58 GMT)

@Batmanian Khawaja is one of our best young players and his ability to play on green decks and pace bowling will be key in the ashes for us. @Josh what amazed me with the contracts was that we acknowledge that batting we are obsessed with bits and pieces allrounders. Lets hope we get our best 6 batsman and 4 bowlers in for the ashes. And Mary you makes a good point earlier regarding Cummins that maybe he has a contract so they can control his comeback and even minimise the amount of cricket he plays. That would make sense.

Posted by handyandy on (April 10, 2013, 20:27 GMT)

So much fuss about who to leave out in order to bring in Rogers.

The simple fact is that apart from Clark none of the Australia top order are worth selecting.

Rogers should be the second batsman selected after Clark. In my opinion he should have been bought into the team when Langer retired.

As for which other batsmen get in ... simple. Who ever gets the most runs leading up to the Ashes matches gets the guernsey. If events of the last year or so have shown anything it is that players can no longer be picked for their potential, They need to be selected on merit.

Posted by ScottStevo on (April 10, 2013, 17:01 GMT)

@DylanBrah, good thinking, the cupboard is bare, so we'll bring back some old blokes who've never played before rather than get younger guys in and develop them? Gr8 thinking! Huss was a legend and he retired because of the spectacular way in which we (or the Oz media and commenters like yourself) turned on Ponting for being too old (yet Rogers is fine to play at a massive 3 years his junior) - crazy! Actually, I like C Ferguson - and he's a long way from being a hack, mate. If everyone is rubbish, who would you select for the ashes???? you say, "we" a lot, but I'm not entirely sure if we are supporting the same nation, fella...

Posted by Batmanian on (April 10, 2013, 16:55 GMT)

@DylanBrah, I think M. Hussey really was feeling his age and thought he was doing the team thing. When Ponting leapt, too, most Australians felt the timing was right and someone would appear in India. Now we'd take them both back.

We just needed a couple of batsmen to look viable (I think Smith gets a bit of a bum rap after doing well; Henriques on the other hand is only ever going to be a novelty bat). I would like to see Burns and Doolan given a go before Khawaja, but if the selectors are going to persist with the idea that Khawaja is almost there, give Khawaja either his last couple of Tests or the beginning of his being a team fixture.

Posted by DylanBrah on (April 10, 2013, 15:37 GMT)

Ed Cowan, Dave Warner, Phil Hughes, Shane Watson, Smith, Khawaja, Marsh are all names that are repeatedly defended by delusional Australian fans.. they all average under 35 in Tests, with the exception of Warner the Sehwag wannabe, averaging 39. Then you get the guys like Shane Warne who want to call up hacks like CJ Ferguson and Bob Quiney. THIS is when you know the cupboard is bare. The state of Australian cricket is truly disgraceful and unacceptable. This is not Bangladesh... our standards should be higher.

Posted by DylanBrah on (April 10, 2013, 15:26 GMT)

No point blooding youngsters when the cupboard is bare. We should be using all of our limited resources, which includes Rogers. The Ashes is no time for experiments and development. Hussey was selfish to retire when he did, should have soldiered on through the Ashes atleast, but instead has left Australian cricket in absolute turmoil. You can almost guarantee he told CA of his intention to play on through the Ashes, just so he could stay in the team for his own selfish reasons, only to retire at the worst possible time. Furthermore, he lied to the Australian public about wanting to stay at home with the family instead of playing the Indian Test series;- how ironical mate, you are now playing in the IPL chasing the big bucks! Can totally understand why CA didn't give him a farewell ODI series. Disgraceful, appalling, unaustralian-like behaviour.

Posted by   on (April 10, 2013, 13:51 GMT)

Would everyone please stop rubbishing cowan!! He is the only person with the right approach to batting in the top order and one of our highest scorers in a tough tour of India. Most of the time he will provide some kind of start (if warner also decides to stick around). I like it how he doesnt flash at everything and leaves on length; that could hod him in very good stead in swinging conditions. I also think his average at the moment as a deveoping player in the toughest spot in the order is on par at least with my expectations. Probably could do with rotating the strike a bit more but I have seen him get through some tough bowling spells and am sure that he will improve towards 40+ with more gametime. Il ike Warner too though sometimes he could wait for one or 2 more sighters IMO before blazing away. Yes Include Rogers but at faith in established 3 of Warner, Cowan, Hughes. Swap rogers for Watson and Khawaja for Smith but only if he outbats Smith in tour games!

Posted by ScottStevo on (April 10, 2013, 12:20 GMT)

Sorry, but those calling for an older, experienced player to step up shouldn't be looking at Rogers as, ask M Ramprakash, domestic level cricket scores count for nothing at international level. Rogers experience of that is one match, so I'm not entirely sure why he's deemed an older head of the game when he's never really played it at international level... It's unfortunate he didn't get a chance a few years back, but at 35 and almost no international experience, for me, he would be a poor selection - regardless of his county and SS performances. @IndianInnerEdge, it's not all doom and gloom. If the selectors start by choosing 6 specialist batsmen (this does not include Smith, Maxwell, Henriques, or any other bits'n'pieces player), a keeper and 4 bowlers, then we have a slight chance. If they choose a decent top 6 that has a good mix of stroke makers and a couple of slower/technically more correct/solid guys, then we may even surprise a few and win it...if the get a. wrong = Oz lose

Posted by hycIass on (April 10, 2013, 10:18 GMT)

Praspunter valid points mate and i can see where you are coming from, but i would still focus on youth and keep my side, we must allow our younsters to develop.

Posted by IndianInnerEdge on (April 10, 2013, 9:20 GMT)

Gud luck to CR - hope he is picked, sounds like a decent and determined bloke, i guess middle order should be wher he should bat and i'm guessing the likes of smith (even though he was a sucess recently), henriques and maxwell will be sidelined. Interesting reading the comments of my fellow bloggers here - especially the oz supporters, lots of nay sayers and doomsday mourners......i am sure OZ will do really well in the ashes....

Posted by PrasPunter on (April 10, 2013, 9:17 GMT)

@hyclass, fine by your line-up with possibly one change - Rogers for Smith. If Watto doesn't bowl at all and bats poorly, Rogers shall be moved up the order and Smith shall be in. Our bowling line-up is certainly not a concern - they pick themselves - Siddle/Patto/Bird or Starc)/Lyon. If it is a seamer-friendly wicket, Rhino for Lyon.

Posted by hycIass on (April 10, 2013, 8:19 GMT)

@FlemingMitch the Indians were never gonna produce a seamer for us so i find it difficult at present to fault our bowlers. lyon came good, but how good? poor ol' hughesy had sea legs. etc etc. . it would usually surface after a period of duress (losing consistently) where the victims are accused of being guily and the guilty have a teflon coating. these guys are likeky to be our best available bar some tinkering. so why the constant poor performances pat? something cannot be right at the top here. i would like to see mickey and his underlings to prepare an essay on their achievements since taking up their roles. for example what would pat howards essay contain? - 0 exactly. cased closed. My batting lineup for the ashes is simple, Watson, Warner, Khawaja, Hughes, Clarke, Smith, Wade, sure I know folks are thinking that Hughes failed in India so fine give him his last chance, Khawaja will play swing bowling very well and could be our star of the series, and Wade bats at 7.

Posted by Amith_S on (April 10, 2013, 7:40 GMT)

Richie Benaud benefited from good advice from Bill O'Reiily, and in turn passed it on to Shane Warne. But in general potential spinners can not get coaching from senior spinners who know what they're doing. And most club captains haven't the foggiest idea about spin. It takes time to develop spinners. The deliveries are inherently more difficult to control yet the margin for error for line and particularly length is much narrower. There is no substitute for hour after hour of net practice, bowling your stock ball, heavily spun, at a small target until you can hit it reliably. Benaud said this process usually takes four years. This same logic goes for our batsman, we have enough experience with Clarke and Watson there, now its time to show faith in our youngsters(i.e Hugh, Khawaja and War) and let them build our batting attack over the coming year. Hughes and Warner have had a bit of time already at the top level and we need to give Khawaja a full ashes series to show what he can do.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (April 10, 2013, 7:22 GMT)

Batmania - Dont think the Aussies need that much luck for this 'appaling' Australian team to beat England. Anderson hasnt been a big destroyer in the past, Finn still young in the game with not a great record. Bell has struggled against the Aussies in the past and COok had one break out tour of Australia last time but before that was pretty average in ashes tests. So many England supporters keep talking about the awesome English side and that this is the worse Australian side to tour England in 20 years. HOwever our worst side ever is not far behind the current "awesome" English side. Not sure how an English supporter will react if what you have suggested occurs.

Posted by KhanMitch on (April 10, 2013, 6:56 GMT)

Certain players in the India series were picked on reputations they might earn in the future. To hear the likes of James Brayshaw verbally fall off his chair on air as Maxwell thrashed around like a branded stallion was not good. Lo and behold, thanks to the heavy breathing of Brayshaw et al every time the camera zoomed in on Maxwell's face, suddenly he's worth a mill and a baggy green to boot.Watson's non-bowling highlighted that unless he bowls he can't hold a spot in the team as a batsman at Test level. As much as i repsect him we either get him bowling, or forget him forever in the creams.Khawaja's non selection over the last 3 months has not been acceptable and the kid is made for test cricket and one of the few whose technique hasn't been affected by T20 cricket so he is a must for the ashes. As for Rogers I would push Hughes to open as he is the best opener in the country but others may disagree after his terrible performance in India.

Posted by PrasPunter on (April 10, 2013, 6:42 GMT)

@minuszero, yes exactly my thoughts - no doubt Watto is a great limited-overs batsman, but going strictly by his recent returns with the bat, he doesn't deserve a place in the top 6. The greatest Aus team that dominated the 90s and 00s didn't have an all-rounder for that matter. So the selectors must stop their obsession with those half-bowlers and half-batsmen and pick proper ones. But Watto will be given a chance , probably for Ashes I. Might well be his last chance to put his test career straight.

Posted by Eightfa on (April 10, 2013, 6:39 GMT)

Mike hussey was a opener but became the consummate middle order test batsmen I think Chris Rodgers could play this roll in the current Australian side for 2 to 3 years. Warner, Cowen/Watson , Hughes, Clarke, smith, Rogers as a top six I know kuwarga has fans and some good numbers but he is still young and his time will come if he shows the right attitude I would like to see him score heavily for a prolonged period of time in first class cricket, I think smith is just ahead of him in complete cricketing terms and seems to to have that something about him.

Posted by ygkd on (April 10, 2013, 6:01 GMT)

One Test. One Test. One Test. Doesn't matter how many times you say it, it never feels right.

Posted by   on (April 10, 2013, 5:52 GMT)

Rogers, Hughes, Watson, Hodge, Clarke, Smith, Haddin, Siddle, Pattinson, Lyon, Bird. That's my starting line up for the first test with Wade, Warner, Voges, Ahmed, Starc, Harris, Hilfenhaus, Henriques, Bailey making up the 20 man squad....

Posted by Mitty2 on (April 10, 2013, 5:46 GMT)

@clarke501, probably did get off a bit off topic and really my last sentence was the only point addressing the issue of the starting 11 - and it is easily rebuttable as you've shown. But I wouldn take too much out of India doing well (despite patto's and siddle's averages of 27 and 33) just because of the negating and "selectively watered" pitches - if those were test cricket standard pitches our quicks would have had a much greater influence. And anyway, not once did we play our best bowling attack; johnson will never be in our 'best' attack, and neither will starc for the next year or so (he's not up to it yet IMO). In England we should be playing siddle/Harris, patto and bird as our best three quicks (Faulkner as our fourth if we want an all rounder), and two of those mentioned didn't play a test in India.

Posted by Batmanian on (April 10, 2013, 5:44 GMT)

@Beales, it is not often I see an alternative team that makes me feel better about the current team, and yet you're largely thinking like the panel. Cowan is awful (they'll still pick him); Warner can change a game in a session, and that's why I tolerate his misfires; 3) Hughes is no number three (they'll still pick him); 4) if you're going to play Rogers, pick the opener you drop; 5) Clarke ; 6) Quiney? Sorry, he's too old - true he got three horrible balls vs RSA, but that's all the chance he gets (I'm from Batmania, btw); 7) Wade - he can work a tail, although a bit of reliability would help; as for your bowlers, if Pattinson when fit is not your first pick (and Cummins when fit next) I wonder whether you can remember when a young monster called Glenn McGrath debuted, looked like a champion, and was stuck with to make sure he became one. Siddle is honest; Harris, Starc, Bird deserve something; Hilf if needed. Lyon isn't good enough, but someone must spin (I vote Agar)

Posted by MinusZero on (April 10, 2013, 5:40 GMT)

It amuses me that some commenters still think Watson is worth his place or should open. In the last two years he has averaged about 24 and less than 20 at opener. Hughes and Cowan who cop most criticism have both scored more than Watson.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (April 10, 2013, 5:13 GMT)

Ozcricketwriter; I cant understand where you are coming from. The Australian selectors have always had room for senior players they just didnt want to have too many that left the game at the same time as Hussey and Ponting have done. Since the retirements of Hayden, Langer, Martyn, Gilchrist, Warne and Mcgrath all within a year of each other they didnt want to be in that position again. Katich initally got left out due to injury and never made his way back as they didnt want the same exodus with Pontng, Hussey and Katich all retiring at the same time. As for Hodge he retired from first class cricket 3 years ago when they still had several senior players. D Hussey and Baily are obviously considered due to there appearance in the one-day format but there recent shield form has been abysmal. There is room for senior players now and Rogers would fit the mold nicely as he is still in great form.

Posted by Beales on (April 10, 2013, 4:54 GMT)

I have signed up to cricinfo for the single reason of saying 'yes', Rogers deserves a Test spot based on the merit of his prolific runs coring in both the Sheffield Shield and the County Championship. The selectors need to reward people who are scoring runs, and Rogers deserves a place. He will bring experience, knowledge of English conditions and a hunger for runs.

1. Cowan (showed guts against South Africa and is putting in the effort. Also scored heavily in shield. Stick with him.) 2. Warner (can change a game in a session) 3. Hughes (has the talent and is Australia's best long term batting prospect. Give him the Steve Waugh treatment - time and opportunity) 4. Rogers (see above) 5. Clarke (because he likes it at number 5 and has been prolific there), 6. ? Quiney (there will be less pressure on him at 6 and he has also scored heavily in shield in recent years.) 7. Wade 8. Starc 9. Siddle 10. Lyon 11. Bird

12. Pattinson 13. Faulkener + Hilfenhaus, Sayers + some extra batting

Posted by Ozcricketwriter on (April 10, 2013, 4:25 GMT)

The problem with picking Rogers is that then the selectors are saying that they are okay with picking an older player - and yet they weren't considering Brad Hodge or David Hussey recently, when in magnificent form, just because they are too old? They even consider George Bailey to be too old, or is it that he is supposedly a limited overs specialist? If they are "building for the future", fair enough, so pick players with potential. But then why are you picking Rogers?

Posted by Barnesy4444 on (April 10, 2013, 3:43 GMT)

Even if we only got 12 months out of Rogers averaging 45 in the top order before retiring. That would suit me and probably satisfy Rogers too. It would probably annoy Middlesex supporters though, he should go there and smash some early season centuries.

Warner could fill a void at 6 playing a Gilchrist type role. He even looked scratchy against the quicks in India, the only two scores he made were mostly edges and he didn't improve as the tour progressed.

Posted by PFEL on (April 10, 2013, 1:11 GMT)

You really have to question the competency of the selectors when guys like Cowan, North, Quiney, Steve Smith have been getting selections ahead of Rogers over the last few years.

Posted by Andy_Wright on (April 10, 2013, 0:23 GMT)

Warner, Cowan, Rogers, Clarke*, Voges, Watson, Wade+, Siddle, Pattinson, Hilfenhaus/Bird/Starc, Lyon

As good a team as any I can come up with that Australia can field right now.

Posted by blink182alex on (April 9, 2013, 21:35 GMT)

Rogers would be one of the first names on the team sheet for my team. We've lost experience in Ponting and Hussey and now we have a line up consisting of a few guys who are trying to learn their games (Warner, Hughes), some that try but just aren't good enough (Cowan), someone batting out of his best position (Watson), a couple of all rounders who shouldn't even be in the squad (Henriques, Maxwell), and one class batsmen (Clarke).

If your going through the Australian domestic scene, who are the best 6 batsmen available for selection? There is no way Rogers is not in the top 5.

1. Warner 2. Watson 3. Rogers 4. Hughes 5. Clarke 6. Voges 7. Haddin. Rogers is a solid option at 3, he may only be a short term option but with series coming up against England and South Africa we need a decent no3. The fact that Maxwell has double the amount of test caps as Rogers is a disgrace.

Posted by shillingsworth on (April 9, 2013, 18:46 GMT)

@Mitty2 - England's first choice bowlers were rubbish in NZ and Australia's flopped in India. Australia's no 10 reserve quick bowler has a better domestic first class bowling average than England's. I fail to see what any of this has to do with an 11 a side Ashes series in England.

Posted by Batmanian on (April 9, 2013, 18:35 GMT)

You almost feel Watson would be happier to be told he's a limited overs guy. Would be hurtful at first, but he'd get over it. Retirement after becoming an asterisk captain - something to tell the grandkids about. The problem for the Test team is there isn't any prospect clearly better than him, and his physique seems to be valued. But the Test team too would adjust. We haven't lost these Ashes yet - if Anderson or Finn were injured and Cook or Bell misfires, this appalling Australian side could even scrape a cheeky series win.

Posted by Batmanian on (April 9, 2013, 18:25 GMT)

Watson and Warner are pretty dangerous openers, even if they don't have a habit of building on a start. Watson seems to be close to useless down the order. If only he could bat first drop, but he can't, any more than Hughes can. I don't think the selectors have the guts to drop Watson.

Cowan is innocuous, but the selectors seem to appreciate his ability to knock the shine off the ball. I can't see them swapping Cowan out for Rogers for the first couple of Tests, even though it seems like such a no brainer.

Khawaja hasn't been good enough in his previous Test spurts, and is headed for the ageing mediocrity category rather than emerging hope. That said, he gets him another shot in England.

So, Cowan, Warner, Hughes, Clarke, Watson, Khawaja, Wade... absolutely terrible line up if you ask me, but I think it's what we're in for. You've got Clarke, the constant promise of coloratura from Warner, decent tail wrangling from Wade, three Shield players and Vice Captain Catastrophe.

Posted by Aussie_nrz on (April 9, 2013, 16:03 GMT)

@Bird_bird_bird- yes we have Lyon for this Ashes and we can play three fast men from Pattinson, Bird, Harris, Siddle, Starc and yes Doolan is bit young but its Ashes we may have our new hero....

Posted by Bird_bird_bird on (April 9, 2013, 15:52 GMT)

@Aussie_nrs, although very different to my preferred XI, i would e more than happy with a side like that for the ashes. Cowan and Warner, although good as a a partnership, haven't really cemented a spot and the loss of both won't really be felt, agree on Watson going, agree on burns inclusion (had him in my squad), but the doolan one is a bit iffy. He had a sensational opening start to the season, and if ever there was a testament to talent: scoring a 150+ century against the world's best bowling attack would be it! But he failed in the final, and failed in the lead up games to it. His average is also below 40... (so is cowan's but he was selected on very good form).

The bowling attack I can see to rattling through england's top and middle order, but I want bird in there somewhere (he is our best bowler IMO). Patto with his pace is a necessity, but I think Harris and siddle are too like for like. I'd have bird in for siddle.

Oh and holland won't be able to play this ashes (injured).

Posted by Mitty2 on (April 9, 2013, 15:34 GMT)

@clarke501, well if he doesn't, I most certainly do. Your next best (based on which division they play in and on recent form and overall average): are woakes, Harris, meaker, Topley, onions and Roland-jones. Now, all of these bowlers have more than respectable averages, but only one has an average of below 25 and Topley has not played that many FC games for his 25.57, but he does look very promising and on that logic; you could discount cummings or Sayers. But on those players, you can't in any parallel universe state that those players give a better pace stock/depth than australia's. Butterworth, Faulkner, bird, pattinson, Sayers, McDermott, cutting, sandhu, mennie, coulter-nile and even cummins in tests; all share better records and all had very good shield seasons. I could mention others with superior averages such as putland, copeland, Hastings and Gannon, but none are genuine test contenders. And please, your starting four bowlers couldn't bowl out NZ and got hammered by SA.

Posted by Aussie_nrz on (April 9, 2013, 15:06 GMT)

Test lineup<BR> -------------------------<BR> C. Rogers, P. Hughes, A. Doolan, U. Khawaja, M. Clarke (c), J. Burns, M. Wade (wk), J. Pattinson, P. Siddle, R. Harris, N. Lyon<BR> -----------------------<BR> J. Bird, M. Starc, D. Warner, S. Watson, L. Butterworth, J. Holland<BR>

Posted by Mitty2 on (April 9, 2013, 15:04 GMT)

Everyone please get smith out of your suggested line ups, he was a horses for courses choice for India (chosen on ability to play spin despite a mediocre SS season), and is notorious for not being able to handle quality pace.

@scottstevo, yes ODI's have and are used as grooming potential test players but ferguson has always been a one day specialist. Check out his FC average, very mediocre. From memory I think it's 37 or under, but that would put him in te same category as England's next test captain (as is touted by the ever knowledgeable Michael Vaughan), in Joe root! Also, doolan's form wittled aasinine the second half of the sason, and with a miserly average, he was only ever going to be picked on form (much like Cowan was). Although I agree on paine's inclusion.

And ignore Rogers' age, be is one of the best batsman in the country - so it doesnt matter!

Posted by Bigskyrocket on (April 9, 2013, 15:03 GMT)

Of course it would be ideal to pick someone aged between 25-30 but no one comes close to this guy in runs and everything that matters except maybe he doesn't fit the captains ideal.

Posted by shillingsworth on (April 9, 2013, 14:49 GMT)

@featurewriter - All the leading countries have many players who 'could' play test cricket. That actually says very little about the strength of the starting eleven. You are clearly familiar with the bowlers in Shield cricket. Your list of English bowlers suggests that you are rather less acquainted with county cricket - you've omitted many who are just as worthy of the 'could play' tag and included Sidebottom who most certainly could not, as he retired from international cricket 2 years ago.

Posted by bobagorof on (April 9, 2013, 14:37 GMT)

Edwards_Anderson: Could you please explain why having multiple openers in a side is a problem? It used to be that openers prided themselves on their technique, as they have to contend with the new ball, and good technique is of value in any position in the batting order. What might be more of a problem is the ratio of left-handers to right-handers.

Posted by crashdog on (April 9, 2013, 12:50 GMT)

Warner, Cowan, Watson, Hughes, Clarke, Rogers, Wade, Johnson, Siddle, Pattinson, Lyon, 12th man Starc/Bird (also good enough for first 11)

6 batsmen, 1 wicket keeper, 4's not rocket science!

Posted by featurewriter on (April 9, 2013, 12:13 GMT)

Posted by Hammond on (April 9, 2013, 11:22 GMT): Mediocre Shield bowlers? Are you serious? Have you seen the quality of Australia's pace bowlers? There are about 20-odd who could play Test cricket right now: Johnson, Starc, Siddle, Pattinson, Cummins, Bird, Hilfenhaus, Cutting, McDermott, Hazlewood, Butterworth, Sayers, Faulkner, Coulter-Nile, Mennie, Copeland, Hastings, Bollinger, Putland, Harris, Sandhu and Watson. England are lost after Broad, Anderson, Sidebottom, Onions, Finn, Tremlett, Woakes and maybe Plunkett and Dernbach. The Ashes will be a battle of Australia's bowlers and England's batsmen. I'm predicting a 2-1 win to England in England and a 3-1 win to Australia in Australia.

Posted by   on (April 9, 2013, 12:11 GMT)

As a Middlesex supporter, may I politely suggest Australia keep plugging away with Cowan, Hughes etc. this summer!

Posted by ScottStevo on (April 9, 2013, 12:10 GMT)

....With that kind of batting line up and our very promising fast bowling attack, who I personally think will rock England a few times if they control the dukes half decently, Aus will still be competitive against all (except against Ind in Ind as we don't have a threatening spin bowler and we certainly played poorly against their spin - which won't matter as they can't play in Oz either!)

Posted by ScottStevo on (April 9, 2013, 12:05 GMT)

What's the point in selecting a 35 year old after ousting our 2 senior players? I think we're better off going for someone 25-30 to ensure that we can get a few more years out them than 2! Callum Ferguson is the man for me. He played ODIs and did very well - ODIs used to be our grooming grounds, and this guy did well. Not sure if injury set him back, but I thought he was def on the way to test match cricket. We need to give him a chance before heading back to old dudes. Also think we should get S Marsh in the mix as I think he has a solid technique suited for test match cricket. If our squad for the ashes looked something like this for batting - Watson (he did v well in '09, but as opener, if not opening then out!)/Hughes, Warner, S Marsh, Ferguson, Khawaja, Clarke, Cowan, Doolan, Burns. Add Paine as keeper(who has done well against Eng in ODI @ opener) at 7 and I think we could have decent line up. They mightn't be all conquering, but they can do a job until our next Ponting arrives

Posted by Thefakebook on (April 9, 2013, 12:04 GMT)

Never looks more likely to me.Hope Rodgers finally get his big test moment this Ashes season.I won't mind if he plays the Eng series only and is never picked again as I back Oz to win in Australia regardless.

Posted by Bird_bird_bird on (April 9, 2013, 11:57 GMT)

@Hammond, how funny, I'm sure he'll just be quivering in his boots about facing your average-above-30 trundlers who couldn't get a ball over 135km/h to save themselves. Excluding patto, cummings, bird, starc and siddle, we could field just as better attack with Faulkner, cutting, McDermott and Sayers. Please, for me, check their FC Records and compare their averages to any of your county medium pacers. Division two bowlers excluded; you know the bowling standards of the county system are poor where batting flops James Taylor and bairstow can have an inflated (redundant) average of 45. It's why they both can't face a short bowl to save themselves; too busy facing the county "quicks" who struggle to get a bowl over waist height and over 125km/h.

Hammond, im sure that you too will be looking forward to seeing Clarke making doubles against your trundlers and bairstow being bounced out by patto every innings. But don't worry, future's good with root (averages 37) being your "next captain"

Posted by Edwards_Anderson on (April 9, 2013, 11:55 GMT)

My only issue with this is that we already have 4 openers in the team(Watson, Cowan, Hughes, Warner), adding Rogers would make that 5 unless you drop Cowan who has averaged just above 30 so far but that's a tough call, i don't know. Mary if they select sensibly and that means ensuring Warner, Hughes and Khawaja as well as Bird, Pattinson and Siddle are in the team, I think we have a slight chance. English conditions will suit Khawaja better and Hughes and Khawaja each had successful county seasons there. I predict Khawaja to be our best batsman along with Khawaja I suspect Smith will struggle a little but I also think he's one for the future and I'd persist even if he fails early on. He learns quickly and having Warner and Smith in the field gives us two of the best fielders in the game. Bird could be very valuable with his bowling style and Pattinson's pace could upset the Poms. But if Micky stuffs around with all rounders and second rate FC batsmen again, we've no chance.

Posted by Beertjie on (April 9, 2013, 11:22 GMT)

@Chris_Howard on (April 9, 2013, 8:37 GMT), I'll be happy to get 3 years out of Rogers, but he ought not to be needed for so long. Backing youngsters who are fly-by-night sensations is very risky among batsmen, so let's hope Silk is the real deal, but it's too risky to try Burns in England. He's bound to get his chance in the return series if he has a good beginning to Shield. Agree with Lawson about Haddin as V-C, but that also temporarily until someone else can become a regular and potential leader. I'd take Watson along but exclude him until it is shown that 4 main bowlers can't bowl England out. Hughes reminds me of Watson insogfar as his batting position is concerned. @Ducky610 on (April 9, 2013, 10:00 GMT) has it right perhaps to open with Hughes. Worth perhaps trying Hughes, Cowan, Rogers, Clarke, Khawaja, Warner, Haddin as the top 7. Watson could replace anyone in the top 3 who doesn't perform after a couple of games or even Khawaja/Warner. Give guys a fair go - no privileges

Posted by Hammond on (April 9, 2013, 11:22 GMT)

Hope he does well. But he won't be facing mediocre Shield bowlers, he will be facing Englands finest at home. Can't see him setting the world on fire, he'll just be delaying the inevitable defeat with better technique than any of the young blokes.

Posted by hycIass on (April 9, 2013, 11:21 GMT)

We need to select the squad like a good docmocracy should. We are still one of those aren't we? So why don't we run a poll, everyone put in their ashes squad and we can talley up the votes as everyone here thinks the selectors have no idea and then proceed to bag out each others squad. (Yes I am taking the Micky(pun intended)). Assume the current Australian top six is Cowan, Warner, Hughes, Clarke, Khawaja, Watson. For the batting this will mean that Warner, Hughes and Khawaja will have to stand up and support clarke and I think this can be big series for Khawaja and Warner . Warner and Smith bowl leggies, Khawaja bowls slow off cutters / fast off breaks For the bowling you can easily get an over or two out of them. Clarke also bowls but should probably give it away in deference to his back condition. Watson is the allrounder, four bowlers can do the job with 1-6 overs of part-time pies thrown in to the day.

Posted by kruther on (April 9, 2013, 11:18 GMT)

There are so many compelling arguments for Rogers to be included - but here is one that perhaps matters most and has not been alluded to. Who on earth would captain Australia if Clarke's back fails. Watson should be nowhere near this responsibility, and frankly there is no one with any experience.... Apart from the current captain Middlesex who knows all the opponents inside out. And in a strange way, a new face might make the perfect captain as he would have to traverse former team mate high wires. Tony Lewis did it all those years ago in India. Build for the future? No, build for now. You have Peter Fulton cracking his maiden 100s against England last month at the age of 34, and Rogers is 35. And every Australian fan would wish Hussey had not retired. He is 38 next month.

Above all else, I can handle Australia not being No 1, I can handle losing to anyone. But only if we pick the best possible side, not 'all-rounders' who can do neither trade at test level.

Posted by Paul_Rampley on (April 9, 2013, 11:09 GMT)

I like Rogers and respect his record, but i have to go with the selectors on their focus on youth, we need to rebulid for the future similar to what India, SA and England are doing at present. My top 6 would remain as Cowan, Warner, Hughes, Khawaja, Clarke, Watson for the ashes. Like Baresy444 i am very much tempted to have Hughes opening as he is made for that position and have Khawaja at 3 ane expect these 2 to dominate our batting in the coming years. We do need 6 specialist batsman with our best keeper at 7.

Posted by FitzroyMarsupial on (April 9, 2013, 10:58 GMT)

Wow, so good to see a comment board on cricinfo with informed, sensible debate. The lack of a 'senior pro' is something that has been acknowledged (finally) by Invers and Mickey Arthur. Rather than waste time trying to get M Hussey out of retirement - in the likes of Rogers, Voges, D Hussey and even Marcus North (I know, but the guy scored big runs in Ashes cricket in England; is well respected as a skipper and has shedloads of county experience) there are players the Aus selectors could call upon. Add 1-2 of those guys to Warner, Watson, Hughes, Wade and Clarke - get Pattinson, Starc, Siddle and Cummings fit and trust them to bowl and you've, maybe, got something worth calling an Aussie XI. Folly of putting Katich out to pasture for non-cricketing reasons now biting MC in the behind!

Posted by Mary_786 on (April 9, 2013, 10:53 GMT)

I'm not sure about opening with Warner and Cowan though. If Watson bowls its too hard not to let him bat where he was most successful as opener. However between Rogers and Cowan i would pick Cowan as he is a better long term option and I am not comfortable getting someone who is 35 years old in for his debut. I would definitely get Khawaja in the top 6 as he was one of our best shield and Ryobi batsman till Christmas after which he hasn't played a game. Warner will fire for us in the ashes, he is overdue. Wade wins over Haddin and Hartley should also be considered. In fact I'd be tempted to pick Hartley, although Wade will be tough to dislodge given his batting success. Harris needs to come back in if he is fit enough. Just my two cents.

Posted by Sunil_Batra on (April 9, 2013, 10:47 GMT)

Anyone watch the recent sports show where Tubby announced his team? Haddin was in there as well as Warner.Lawson not only supports Haddin but has him in a leadership role.The reason is, and if you ever played the game you would understand, it is about experience and ability. There needs to be this mix with youth and talent. For the youth guys like Khawaja and Hughes are very important for the squad. Khawaja's ability to play swing bowling will be vital for the batting lineup. Imagine a team with Clarke, Warner, Haddin, Khawaja, D Hussey, Pattinson, Cummins, Starc, and build the rest around that. . Darren Lehmann coaching and Clarke removed from the selectors role.A captain is handed his team to represent their country and he had no right in interfering with that process.

Posted by ozziespirit on (April 9, 2013, 10:31 GMT)

Rodgers deserves a go but it's sad that there are no other options for Aus at this time. You think when Hayden and the rest left there would have been some effort to bring new talent through the ranks but there's no one knocking on the door for the top 3 spots. Rodgers has the experience, but will he be good enough against Anderson and co? He's earned a go at least.

Posted by Ducky610 on (April 9, 2013, 10:00 GMT)

He has to e picked this time! Surely... 3 of our top 4 averaged under 30 in the last series and one has done his est but still struggles to average more than 35 (cowan)... Roers is a short term fix; but with Jordan Silk being the next most likely still only 3 games in his carrer having Rogers around for 1-2 years is hardly a bad thing...

1. Hughes 2. Rogers 3. Khawaja 4 Warner 5. Clarke 6. Smith 7. Wade/Haddin 8. O'keefe 9. Faulkner 10. Siddle 11. Pattinson (12th. Starc)

That would be my side for the 1st two ashes tests. Long atting line up; faulkner and o'keefe have significantly etter FC records than Starc and Lyon as well...

Posted by Mitty2 on (April 9, 2013, 9:48 GMT)

@nutcutlet has it spot on. Ideally, considerung theres no world cup in test crickrt; there's no need for developing players; all selections should be horses for courses (ie smith in india) and the best possible XI should be chosen at all times. This is only augmented if there's an ashes series. Rogers is quite clearly, in our top six batsmen, and consequently, he should be selected for every tests he is available to play in.

@Tom Barkley, the ashes are the highest priority.. If we take a batting line up of consisting of David hussey, Rogers and vogues and they all retire straight after the back to back ashes... As long as they contributed to a series win, who cares! We can then play the more developed (developed in the sense that they wouldve played more first class cricket) youngsters afterwards, ie: silk, burns, even khawaja if he isn't selected.

@barnsey444, get smith out of your line up, he was a horses for courses for India; he can't play quality pace.

Posted by Ozcricketwriter on (April 9, 2013, 9:43 GMT)

Good to hear Rogers being talked about seriously. Pity that they can't do the same thing for David Hussey, who looks like he may end his career as the best ever FC batsman not to play a test. I'd pick both for the Ashes, and seriously consider Brad Hodge as well.

Posted by Barnesy4444 on (April 9, 2013, 9:18 GMT)

Rogers in the top order would be a short-term solution, but so is Cowan. I can't see a slow scoring opener where 40 is a good score having a long career.

Ideally Hughes should be opening. He really is good against the hard ball with quicks bowling. Watching the highlights of the 45 he made in the 4th India test, he flayed the quicks and was the only batsman in either team's first innings to make any impact at all on a difficult pitch. He was in early after a quick wicket, the pitch got him in the end.

Khawaja should be there, Smith hasn't done anything wrong and Warner should be in the middle order. Watson 1, Hughes 2/3, Rogers 2/3, Clarke 4, Khawaja/Warner/Smith 5/6, 'keeper 7.

We need 6 specialist batsmen with the best gloveman at 7, if that's someone other than Wade, then pick them.

Posted by   on (April 9, 2013, 9:13 GMT)

Please select Rogers - it seems inconceivable why he hasn't been picked over the past 5 years, especially with 50+ 1st class 100's. Rogers must be livid seeing all these people being given chances before him without having to prove themselves (Quiney good example). I know it is easy being an arm chair selector however the current selecting committee are clearly struggling to see the wood from the trees and need to step back to gain a fresh perspective... Cricket Australia wanted Hussey to continue through the double Ashes - what is the problem replacing him which a like for like age & experienced player like Rogers... am I going mad?

Posted by Nutcutlet on (April 9, 2013, 9:01 GMT)

If the Australian selectors do not pick Chris Rogers for the upcoming Tests v Eng then I will know two things I don't know now. First, the selectors are fundamentally lacking in cricketing sense to the point of perversity. Season after season CR has shown that he can counter English bowlers in English conditions & that in a pool of players that is short on quality & international experience cannot be ignored. The second point will thus become apparent: the Ashes do not matter to the selectors - that they prefer more rolling the dice in their desperation to find a new Ponting or a Michael Hussey than dealing with the real politik that confronts them. As an Englishman I want & fully expect Australia to put their best possible XI into the field. Anything less dishonours the sacred concept of the Ashes. If Rogers plays at least ten more Tests, then that would more accurately reflect his quality which he undoubtedly has, compared with the paltry one that stands to his name at the moment.

Posted by Chris_Howard on (April 9, 2013, 8:37 GMT)

@Mitty2 nailed the other point this article missed. "Our batting is lacking experience".

We lost Ponting and Hussey and that showed badly in India not just on the field, but off it too.

We'll only get 3 years out of Rogers, but he can fill the void of maturity and experience missing in the Aussie team at the moment.

Posted by   on (April 9, 2013, 8:35 GMT)

Agreed 100% Rogers, Cowan, Warner for me at the top. In that order. Rogers experience will bring out the best in Cowan and Warner.

Posted by Mitty2 on (April 9, 2013, 8:21 GMT)

@vivgilchrist, clarke's average at 5 is simply too good to move him from there. Sure it's not helpful us being 3/50 when he comes in, but against SA twice and against India three times (in australia), those 3/50 turned into 550+ scores.. At the top of my head, in one year he scored three doubles, one triple and one century at 5...No need to move him from where he is best.

My top 6 would be: Cowan Warner Rogers khawaja Clarke hughes Rogers has played three before so he's not that out of position, and the cowan/Warner opening parntership is statistically the world's best. Hughes is out of position, but he hasn't really done well at any position at test level so it doesn't really matter. Khawaja scores too slowly and takes too long to get in for a number six and his technique can help stop a collapse batting at 4. And watson has no benefits to his batting, susceptible to getting out early, when he's looking good/settled, before a break, before a milestone and can't make a big score.

Posted by VivGilchrist on (April 9, 2013, 7:57 GMT)

He should play in England full-stop. Maybe he and Warner will pair up well. Maybe Warner will be better suited to 5 or 6 allowing Watson or Cowan to open. I like Hughes, but he makes me to nervous batting inside the top 4. All I know is that Australia need stability at the top. 1 Rogers 2 Watson 3 Khawaja 4 Clarke 5 Hughes 6 Warner. Can't do any worse......

Posted by Mitty2 on (April 9, 2013, 7:51 GMT)

I really can't raise many more points about the necessity for Rogers in the ashes that this article has already covered. When quiney was selected I was outraged, doolan had been in ripping form and even scored a 160 against the saffers and I thought he was a shoe in, I didn't really acknowledge Rogers because he had just scored one ton up to that point for the season, but even so, his proven record is simply too good to ignore. If he was selected for that number three, we would have seen the back of Shane Watson! (we can dream). But sadly, we would have missed the greatest 9 ever made. (lol Arthur).

Our batting is lacking experience, and if Rogers comes in at three or opening, we get not only that imperative experience to help the other batsman, but a stopper to top order collapses! His experience/record in England is only a bonus. Another point is that at 35 and being starved of chances, he would play every test like it's his last, and he would have the greatest incentive to succeed.

Comments have now been closed for this article

Email Feedback Print
Alex WinterClose
County Results
Glamorgan v Gloucs at Cardiff - Sep 24-27, 2013
Glamorgan won by 8 wickets
Kent v Lancashire at Canterbury - Sep 24-27, 2013
Kent won by 2 wickets
Notts v Somerset at Nottingham - Sep 24-27, 2013
Match drawn
Surrey v Yorkshire at The Oval - Sep 24-27, 2013
Match drawn
Sussex v Durham at Hove - Sep 24-27, 2013
Sussex won by 6 wickets
All recent results »
News | Features Last 3 days
News | Features Last 3 days