Australia tour of India 2012-13

Khawaja, Smith will be considered - Arthur

Brydon Coverdale

March 6, 2013

Comments: 209 | Text size: A | A

Australia coach Mickey Arthur has said Usman Khawaja and Steven Smith will both be strongly considered for the third Test in Mohali after the team's innings defeat in Hyderabad. However, Arthur also said the group of batsmen on tour in India was the best Australian cricket had to offer and it was important to provide them with as much experience as possible in different conditions to allow them to develop into more rounded Test players.

Australia's batting in Hyderabad was so poor that they couldn't even manage in both innings what Cheteshwar Pujara and M Vijay compiled in their 370-run partnership. Australia were back at the ground in Hyderabad on Wednesday for a centre-wicket training session on what should have been the fifth day of the Test and the batsmen spent plenty of time working against spin.

Arthur, Michael Clarke and new selector on duty Rod Marsh have a week to decide on the line-up for the third Test but having been flummoxed by spin in both Tests and the tour match, Phillip Hughes is the man whose position appears in most danger. With Clarke's move up the order now confirmed, if Smith or Khawaja was to play it would likely be at No. 5.

"Usman Khawaja and Steven Smith have got to come into the reckoning at some stage," Arthur said. "When we have more of the same it will probably give us the same result. We are certainly going to have to have a look at what is our best top-six combination. We'd be silly if we didn't think about them. Whether they both play, whether one plays, whether none plays I'm not 100% sure but they've got to come very much into our thinking."

Despite the potential for changes, Arthur believes the struggles of the batsmen in India does not change the fact that the selectors have assembled the best group available. Hughes is the leading run-scorer this Sheffield Shield season and at the age of 24 has accumulated 21 first-class centuries, Ed Cowan continually makes starts at Test level, David Warner is a potential match-winner and Shane Watson's ability is vast, but so is the drought since his last Test hundred.

"I see that for us as our greatest challenge, making these guys the best we can possibly be," Arthur said. "If you looked at how we went in Australia, Eddie Cowan is a fighter. He has continually done enough. Is he going to win us games? Not sure. We need more runs out of Shane Watson. Phillip Hughes came back into the side and was successful in conditions that he was used to. It was always going to be tough for him here.

"Davey Warner averaged 47 in our international Test series in Australia. It's a challenge for him playing outside. We've just got to get as much experience into these players as we possibly can, because I do think they're the best players. There's absolutely no doubt. I've looked at a lot of players. This is our best young crop of batsmen that we have. We've just got to make them the best they can possibly be and try to fast-track them.

"I think they're realising some harsh lessons about playing in India. When I stood up at the start of the tour and said to them 'this is going to be the toughest cricket you've ever played', they looked and said 'yeah yeah right'. They're now realising it and they're like leeches for information. They're shocked at how hard it is."

As part of their strategies against spin, Hughes and Warner both tried to sweep R Ashwin early in their second innings in Hyderabad and perished doing so. After the match, Clarke said he was disappointed at the amount of cross-batted shots that had cost batsmen their wickets early in their innings and Arthur said those two dismissals in particular had raised his ire.

"Our whole conversation around this second Test match was about playing with a vertical bat not a horizontal bat," Arthur said. "So when we lost two wickets to the sweep I wasn't best pleased, put it that way, our first two wickets. Especially as our briefing that morning had been 'I hope you all noticed about how Cheteshwar Pujara and Murali Vijay went about their business'.

"Until they learn the harsh lessons of getting out and possibly losing their place because of it, they're not going to realise it. When you're batting and there's a lot of fielders around the bat, there's a massive TV audience and you can't score a run, you feel as if you can't get away. When there's no fielder there it's very easy to think 'I'm going to play my cards here because if I get on there, I score'. I keep telling them there's a reason why there's no fielders there. They want you to hit there. You're putting yourself in danger."

But as well as the younger members of the batting order, Australia desperately need more from their vice-captain, Watson, whose top score so far in the Test series is 28. Watson's last Test century came when Australia last visited Mohali on the 2010 tour. While Watson might benefit from the return to a productive venue with more in it for the fast men, Arthur said he didn't feel that Watson had been in bad form.

"I don't think it's a technique thing at all," he said. "Every time he has gone to the wicket, he has looked brilliant. But he's been getting out for 20s. I just pray every time he goes to the wicket there's a big score because I think once he gets that one big score, that will unlock the shackles. We really need Shane Watson firing now. Michael Clarke needs a lot of support in the batting."

After the Hyderabad loss, Clarke said that he had no choice but to move up from No. 5 and Arthur said while Clarke's new position was not decided, he would be comfortable with the best player of spin at No. 3 or No. 4 in the Indian conditions.

"It has to happen and Michael [Clarke] and I have been discussing it often," Arthur said. "It was fine when he was at five and we had Michael Hussey at six, there was batting down. He likes batting five, he's got a great record batting at five but when it starts impacting on our first innings and he starts running out of partners, then we thought it was time for us to have a look at it and he ran out of partners in the first innings. I don't mind if he bats three in the subcontinent. I would like Michael four in conditions outside of the subcontinent. He's good enough to bat anywhere, that's a given."

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

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Posted by   on (March 9, 2013, 17:02 GMT)

I do not see how Phillip Hughes can continue in the Australian team. He has had three separate chances now to cement his position but has failed each time. He has numerous major flaws in his technique which means he cannot play the swingibg ball, short fast ball or tthe spinning ball. The fact that he was leading run scorer in the Shield prior to his latest recall should have been deemed irrelevant as long as these technixal deficiencies exist. A Test batsman is of no use if he can only score runs on batsnen-friendly home pitches against a medium-paced ball that does not move; these are not the conditions usually encountered on tour and it's time the selectors recognised this.

Posted by Green_and_Gold on (March 8, 2013, 12:28 GMT)

Maybe the bigger issue is where people come into the line up. I may be wrong on this (im sure someone will unload a bunch of stats) but these new guys (Hughes, Marsh, Khawaja etc) should be coming into the team at 5 and 6 not 3. Its a bit disappointing that some of the senior players didnt move up the order at the end of their careers to allow the new guys to come in at 5 and 6. Clarke moving to 3 or 4 is a good move and should shield the less experienced players. I guess that Hughes is most likely to be dropped so Khawaja could get another shot. Good luck to him if he does. Smith has also shown promise but again hasnt done enough in the side to keep his place. Overall i dont thing we could do much worse that the last result.

Posted by Mary_786 on (March 8, 2013, 11:00 GMT)

@Johnno Watson is the key to regaining the ashes. I agree he has under achieved and is under the pump but if he performs in England like last time then our chances go from 20% to 45 %. The POMs don't have an allrounder which is one of the big advantages we have got if he can perform like last time. If his body holds up ( the key) and he opens I'm backing him to perform. Besides what would you prefer Cowan or Hughes averaging 31 or Watson averaging 25 with the bat and 25 with the ball. Least we know Watson can do it. I like him and Warner at the top with Khawaja at 3 and Clarke at 4, that to me looks like a solid top 4 at least for the ashes.

Posted by Barnesy4444 on (March 8, 2013, 6:06 GMT)

If there's one batsman who deserves a shelacking it's Watson. He's played in India a lot with IPL and a previous test tour, he's gotten starts but hasn't gone on. Warner needs a kick up the backside too as he's also gotten starts and played in the IPL a lot. Hughes has never played in India before and is also batting in a new position. If there's one batsman who deserves a break it's Hughes. Khawaja needs to come in at 5 in place of Watson or Warner.

Posted by Sunil_Batra on (March 8, 2013, 4:50 GMT)

I don't think anyone is doubting that changes our needed to both our batting and bowling. For the batting it has to be Khawaja and for the bowling either Starc or Johnson plus Lyon shoudl come in. Worse thing about the last loss was that even the Indian commentators felt sorry, the body language from our players was terrible, no talk in the field, heads were down, the keeper was too quiet, no stare downs from the bowlers, no energy or presence at all. Where is the mental dissintegration?My side - Watson, Warner, Hughes, Clarke, Khawaja, Henriques, Wade, Johnson, Pattinson, Doherty, Lyon.

Posted by Paul_Rampley on (March 8, 2013, 4:04 GMT)

No doubt that Khawaja has to come in and desreves to come in based on shield and Ryobi form. I'm wondering how often a visiting team has lost two consecutive tests in India after batting first?Everybody knows ( thanks Leonard ) that getting wickets is generally harder in India, and getting runs in India perhaps somewhat easier but requires considerable patience mostly. Unless Khawaja comes in I don't think we can muster a total to bowl with five recognised batsmen because that total must be 500. Six batsmen would be preferable but the selectors are comprimising between having an allrounder supporting the bowlers and hoping he also is going to make runs. Assuming the lads don't suddenly take 9-100 today and score 500 in the next dig, or even if they do, they should go into the next test with;

Cowan Warner Hughes Khawaja Clarke Henriques Wade Johnson Starc Lyon Doherty

I prefer another batsman in the above lineup but we are short of options in the current squad.

Posted by redneck on (March 8, 2013, 2:03 GMT)

@Chicagoan76 mate lay off the aus social issues bashing!!! if aus did have what your inferring (which is not true!!!) then khawaja would not have a baggy green cap or a spot on the tour of india ala south african sides until 92!!!! but he does, so give it a rest!!! every post you make has some stupid hidden agenda painting us as racist. like ive told you before stick to following the white sox, as aussie cricket and australian social issues are not your strong suit!!! @Shaggy076 give me a reason for cosgrove being frequently ignored despite strong form? his waist line may be large but his form since moving to tassie (even in SA he wasnt too bad in a poor team) has warrented been given a shot espechally given the incosistent way the national side has gone about its batting over the same peiriod in time.

Posted by Barnesy4444 on (March 8, 2013, 1:49 GMT)

What I say will probably not be very popular. Open with Hughes. He's an opening batsman, give him 10-15 overs of pace to get used to the conditions. He's never played in India before unlike the other batsman who should know better. Once Hughes gets to 20-30 he usually goes on to make 100. He hasn't faced pace at all during these tests and only had one warm up match. Drop Warner for the remaining India series. He has been just as bamboozled as Hughes against spin, but has looked poor against pace as well. Clarke 3, Watson 4, Khawaja 5, Henriques 6, Wade 7. Khawaja at least plays with a straight bat and has patience. When we go to England open with Warner/ Hughes and drop Cowan. Also, why are we not playing another tour match during this 10 day break?

Posted by   on (March 8, 2013, 1:09 GMT)

@ Beertjie . What is the difference between OZ & NZ? In Oz, North is going south; and in NZ,the South (Southee) is going north. ( provoked by your argument in favour of Marcus North)

Posted by Sirio on (March 8, 2013, 0:37 GMT)

@ Chicagoan76: There are other factors in play here that shed a light on the broader Aussie society.

I love that statement. I am an Aussie and feels bad for these things to happen to anybody let alone "a born Pakistani". He is talented and his time will come definitely. Remember "What doesn't kill you makes you stronger".

This lad has a potential. All what he has to do is to keep on practicing and perform when he gets a chance. Captain and coach and board will NOT give him a chance as they have given to other mediocre. He just have to capitalise on his day and value the Value of his wicket. No Rick Ponting getting him run out business etc. Just focus and he will be fine. He just have to prove it on day to day basis.

My prediction is that he will be rested for the coming up test matches and Steve Smith will be given an undeserving chance because of the "other factors in play here that shed a light on the broader Aussie society"

Posted by skkh on (March 8, 2013, 0:22 GMT)

Arthur where is the need to try out Khawaja? You have very talented players like Maxwell and others. BTW can you enlighten us as to why there is this bias against Khawaja? Is it because of his ethnicity? If so it is indeed a sad state of affairs. Hughes was protected against the South Africans and when he scored against the Sri Lankans he was proclaimed the next Ponting. He ought to have been protected against the Indian spinners too!!!I dare say if Khawaja was tried against the Sri Lankans he would have had a couple of 100's under his belt by now.When Watson was injured the "all rounder" Maxwell was considered in his place. And when Clarke was injured again Maxwell was considered and Khawaja was left to warm the bench on both occasions. What is the reason for our obsession with bits and pieces players like Maxwell who can neither bowl nor bat at international level? Our policy was to select the best 6 batsmen, the best wicket keeper and 4 good bowlers. Why have we dumped this policy?

Posted by Fleming_Mitch on (March 7, 2013, 23:42 GMT)

@Chicagoan76 this is a point I have argued for a while in that Khawaja hasn't been given the same run as all ther youngers batsman in the team. As you mentioned all he needs is a real extended go(even half of what Cowan has had at 15 games in a row) and we could have a future test star. If the captain and coach show this confidence in him he will come through and if he doesn't then no more to talk about. Also his running and fielding are very sharp now thanks to hard work done with Boof Lehman who i think should be our future coach. He has done wonders for the Bulls helping them win all 3 formats. Also good to see England struggling in NZ, there may be hope yet for us.

Posted by Edwards_Anderson on (March 7, 2013, 23:34 GMT)

@Joseph Langford fantastic analysis bud. What it shows is that Khawaja was unlucky to be dropped and showed alot of potential in his time in the team. The run out at Gabba was not his fault and very unlucky as he was set for a big one on 38 and his top score of 70 odd in that innings in a record 300 chase against SA was exceptionsal as it was in their backyard. He deserves an extended run and has shown he can do it against the best bowling attack in the world. Spin bowling is a major issue. Katich/Warner were never exploited properly for their part time spin bowling options like MarkWaugh. A specialist wrist spinner should be selected and always play in the team. Finger spinners should only play in ODIs and not test matches. That will send a clear message to any aspiring spinner, that to get into the test team they should be a wrist spinner.

Posted by Mary_786 on (March 7, 2013, 23:15 GMT)

@Hyclass excellent analysis. I think what I would add to your analysis is that Wade should focus on his catching first, it hasn't been up to standard and dump the allrounders and play the best six batsmen on tour and restore Wade to number seven. Then look at the Mohali pitch and decide if you want 2 quicks and 2 spinners or 3 quicks and 1 spinner. You have Warner and Smith who both bowl leg-break-pies so if you only want 1 front line spinner it has to be Lyon as he turns the ball the other way. Siddle, Pattinson, Lyon, and either Johnson or Doherty depending on the pitch. Khawaja is a must and give him a crack and a real one at that . Job done.Now put your feet up and have another beer.

Posted by Shri_The_Rockstar on (March 7, 2013, 22:41 GMT)

Don't know why Shaun Marsh is not given a chance in Indian Conditions. He has the experience needed to perform as we have seen him doing the same in IPL for over the years. And if the selection has to be made between Khawaja and Smith, I would definitely go with Smith given that he can bowl as well as has got some experience of playing in Indian conditions as well.

Posted by ygkd on (March 7, 2013, 21:10 GMT)

I formed a considered opinion of Steve Smith's international cricket years ago - I considered him lucky. That he should be back in the frame again begs the question - how lucky can you get?

Posted by   on (March 7, 2013, 20:22 GMT)

Usman Tariq Khawaja .. TM : 6 .. B.Av : 29.22

Doesn't sound very impressive .. then you filter through the numbers.

Debut : Ashes 5th Test. Scores 37 and 21 .. more runs than PH, MH or MJC in this Test.

Tour's SL : 1st Test Scores 21 & 26. 2nd Test, walks onto a flat track and an opportunity for a big score. Scores 13no before rains come down and Clarke declares. Dropped for 3rd Test allowing RP to return on a batsman's paradise.

Tours SA : Recalled for 2nd Test .. BATS No3 IN FRONT OF RP & MJC. Top scores in 2nd Inn run chase that wins test and draws series.

NZ at Home : BATS No3 IN FRONT OF RP & MJC. 1st Test : Seems set on 38 before RP runs him out. "Ponting's error completely, there was no need for that risky run first ball after tea." (Source : 2nd Test : Not so good but his 23 in 2nd Inn is 2nd top score, more that MJC, MH & RP combined.


Recall him now!!! But some get easier jobs than this!!!

Posted by Chicagoan76 on (March 7, 2013, 16:43 GMT)

People saying that Khawaja has not proven himself are not acknowledging that he has not been given an assured extended run that has been given to lesser players. When you look at Khawaja innings, you notice his technique and poise. WHen you see a young player of that caliber, as a coach and captain your responsibility is to groom him. They went after Khawja's running and fielding. You can certainly expect a layer to improve those things but you dont keep the lad out for those. When your captain says to you, play without fear, we will keep you for 15 tests at the minimum, is when you get the confidence to show your talent. In Khawaja's case, it is apparent that the selectors, coach and his captain are not assessing his potential based on talent alone. There are other factors in play here that shed a light on the broader Aussie society.

Posted by   on (March 7, 2013, 14:41 GMT)

Your cupboards are bare and the end is near, there are no players left with any flare ; there's much to despair! Go to England later this year, and it will be a repeat all over again.

Eulogy wriiten by a fan in a country with no cricket(Canada)

Posted by Beertjie on (March 7, 2013, 12:40 GMT)

@Trapper439 on (March 7, 2013, 11:13 GMT) "Hughes did score a hundred in both innings in a Test in South Africa." Marcus North was a success on that tour, too!

Posted by Shaggy076 on (March 7, 2013, 11:24 GMT)

I havent made an arguement against Rogers as he is probably one of the only players making a case to be there.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (March 7, 2013, 11:22 GMT)

Im getting a little sick of hearing about certain players back in Australia that people reckon should be on tour, D Hussey averaging under 20 this year in shield bad time to lose form but cant tour on those stats, S Marsh on top of currently being injured whilst playing for Australia A, hit an all time low 3 months ago with a single figure shield average was dropped from WA has come back to some form with one ton but a long way off, R Quiney really hasnt put his usually shield runs after getting dropped from Aus, G Bailey sometimes batting 6 for Tassie averaging under 30 not in the hunt, C Fergusson Im a SOuth Aussie and a fan of his but has regularly disappointed in shield having a good year but needs to back it up again, Klinger currently in by far his worse year for SA, P Forrest averaging under 15, Voges until christmas was in one of the biggest slumps of his life, J Burns averaging under 30 this year consistently gets out to spin, Doolan his first good season and form has tapered.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (March 7, 2013, 11:15 GMT)

Jayzuz - Excellent post, we have only had issues on one surface. The Indian test match pitches are dustier than Sri Lanka. If you watch closely the ball regularly goes through the surface and a puff of dust comes up. The ball explodes this is the issue we have with the bat. SPinners getting a lot of over spin on the ball can be superstars here and paupers in the rest of the world. Look at the positives Warner come along way in the Australian summer, Cowan did get a ton against South Africa, Hughes was good in his return in Australia, Watson finished with an 80 in Australia. They are our best players but are struggling here. India is always going to be a problem as now with IPL (pencilled in April) we will always play our tests mid Feb/March at the peak of our summer so we will never go to India to acclimatise properly. We need players to have experience in these test and stick with them for the long haul.

Posted by Trapper439 on (March 7, 2013, 11:13 GMT)

To all the posters claiming that Khawaja hasn't been given a fair chance, he's had 6 Tests to prove himself and he's only scored 263 runs at an average of less than 30. He has scored one half-century in that time. That is far from impressive.

Personally, I'd select Khawaja over Hughes for the next Test, but Hughes did score a hundred in both innings in a Test in South Africa.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (March 7, 2013, 11:05 GMT)

Oztraya - no one deserves a 10 test run without performance. Hughes has had 5 tests back and scored 2 * 80's in his first three.Then 3 one day tons and took his chance. Cowan got to the 6 test point better than Khawaja and scored a ton - thus he is an opener in shield cricket which Khawaja has never done. He will get another chance just got to be ready to do something with this chance.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (March 7, 2013, 10:59 GMT)

Sunil_Batra, 1-2 games is an opportunity Khawaja needs to man up and take it. Or are you saying that he is weak of mind and only going to perform if guaranteed a decent run. In that case why are we even going to give him a go? There has been many a player to come in for injured players and immediately make way on there return, just check Stuart Law's stats.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (March 7, 2013, 10:57 GMT)

hycIass = You make a very convincing argument before seeing those stats I thought Khawaja should replace Hughes but looks like Smith should come in. THe 3 worse performed of those have all got games as allrounders ie provice bowling options which Khawaja is not an allround option.

Posted by   on (March 7, 2013, 10:28 GMT)

The selections are puzzling. WHy dont they try Bailey?? I dont know Khawaja(though i feel he may never deserve a fair chance because of his origin/color. Symonds , any one?? ) . Bailey superbly fits in ODI and T 20's and would not be surprised if he is nt performing. Their over reliance on Watson is also surprising, considering his technique against good pace bowling and spinners. Ed Cowan can come and try for a place in Tamil Nadu and still wont be picked. Its sad to imagine Hayden , Langer were also openers for Australia.

Posted by Thefakebook on (March 7, 2013, 10:23 GMT)

Oh my goodness Eng are so dominating NZ by getting bundle out for 160 odd and almost conceding a lead already for 0 wickets.Yup I can clearly see them white washing the OZ in their own turf!(LOL almost couldn't complete the comment)

Posted by RoJayao on (March 7, 2013, 10:22 GMT)

I just don't agree that Smith is among our best batsman, that's just plain bloody silly! But frankly it's scary that this is close to the best squad we could muster. It says alot about the lack of decent batsman in Australia at the moment.

Posted by hycIass on (March 7, 2013, 10:17 GMT)

Quick analysis on some of our batsman:

Moises Henriques: 18x 4-innings matches @ 36.9 13x 50-over matches @ 28.1

Glenn Maxwell: 13x 4-innings matches @ 32.1 21x 50-over matches @ 28.9

Usman Khawaja: 32x 4-innings matches @ 37.9 23x 50-over matches @40.5

Shane Watson 17x 4-innings (First-Class or higher) matches @ 29.6 27x 50-over (List-A or higher) matches @ 33.2

Stephen Smith: 15x 4-innings matches @ 41.2 21x 50-over matches @ 35.9

Michael Clarke: 27x 4-innings matches @ 68.3 32x 50-over matches @ 43.4

David Warner: 22x 4-innings matches @ 50.8 39x 50-over matches @ 36.2

Its difficult to understand why the three worst-performed players on that list have all gotten test caps on this tour while Khawaja cools his heels? Its time to get Khawaja in the third test and give him a real go at it, not 1 game.

Posted by Sunil_Batra on (March 7, 2013, 10:00 GMT)

@Oztraya you are absolutely correct, Khawaja has only had 1-2 games at any one point so he deserves a real crack. Also the selectors erred leaving Haurtiz at home and erred again playing 4 paceman in the First Test.The other problems are terrible succession planning with regards to middle order batsman and spinners.Mind you just saw the score from NZ-Eng the Ashes are within reach for us if we can get our batting sorted.

Posted by   on (March 7, 2013, 9:38 GMT)

@ Geoffrey MacKnight ..... it's not that we are losing, it is the way we are losing. Hyderabad was by an innings and Chennai was almost the same.

Posted by   on (March 7, 2013, 9:19 GMT)

Like the biblical saying, "Dust to Dust", we are going to witness "Ashes to Ashes", when Oz goes to England to play Ashes. At the moment both are burning -- not have become ashes yet! At the hands of two teams still struggling to find their feet, on all surfaces. That is India and NZ. My first off-the-cuff reaction, on reading England's 1st innings in NZ is: "What the hell is going on?"

Posted by Periya824 on (March 7, 2013, 8:36 GMT)

Good news to hear.. Put Khawaja and Smith in the middle order. Please remove Phil Hughes from the Playing X1. He is struggling against the spinners. Ashwin got him out easily with an ordinary ball.

Posted by ozwriter on (March 7, 2013, 8:21 GMT)

khawaja must come in and be given a 10 test run. averaging 29 after 6 one off tests is nothing compared to averaging in the 30s after 10-15 tests and long spells in the team (cowan, hughes)

Posted by Dil-Dil-Pakistan on (March 7, 2013, 8:06 GMT)

It is very poor perfomec of Ausies Batsman it is time of thinking of Aus mangment and coching department and relese best 11 in 3rd tast and should be khawaja and Simth part of final 11

Posted by ramab on (March 7, 2013, 7:27 GMT)

I feel that David Hussey would be miles ahead to play tests than most batsmen in Aussie lineup (except Clarke). Not sure what Smith would bring to the table than say Maxwell or other allrounders.

Posted by   on (March 7, 2013, 7:26 GMT)

How is Steve Smith even in the test squad? A solid First class season Avg of 40 with no hundreds? maybe his impressive non existent bowling figures?... or perhaps its because he is from NSW? Rubbish selection. I feel sorry for Alex Doolan. Had a impressive first class summer with no rewards, unlike the hack smith who seems to have gotten on this tour for doing sweet $#%^ all.

Posted by   on (March 7, 2013, 6:36 GMT)

No doubt Khawaja will be picked and then quickly jettisoned again if he doesn't immediately find his feet.

The top four are essentially all openers (or at least Watson appears to be when not bowling). I really think one of those top four needs to go move Clarke to 4 and give Khawaja some tenure at 5.

Posted by peterstich on (March 7, 2013, 6:33 GMT)

Can't agree more to Jayzuz. These problems are for tailormade spin friendly pitches. I agree the batting isn't as sharp as it was 10 years back, but then make a note that, we were used to see players making their debut after playing 5+ years of domestic cricket. And what do we have now, players with less than 20 domestic matches playing international cricket. Since we don't have anyone of the caliber of Huss or Hodge in the domestic circle, we have to wait till the present crop grooms.

Posted by Big-Dog on (March 7, 2013, 6:30 GMT)

Khawaja in for Hughes is the obvious pick but Smith??...he should'nt even be in India.

Posted by phunny_game on (March 7, 2013, 5:55 GMT)

Don't worry about the ashes guys... England are not too far behind... That too against NZ

Posted by   on (March 7, 2013, 5:23 GMT)

Surely Callum Ferguson will get his turn soon, I don't see anything else left that isn't injured.

Posted by Nightwing32 on (March 7, 2013, 4:41 GMT)

Smith would be a decent selection as a batsman. Khawaja against spin I'm not sure about but he would be No.6 for the Ashes. Smith can play spin pretty well and had a decent shield season. Hughes should be left out for the two matches and might as well slot in Johnson over Siddle because Johnson could be a solid pick. Look as much as we can talk about selections, if they players don't perform then there is not much you can do.

Posted by   on (March 7, 2013, 4:40 GMT)

Very well spoken Micky Arthur and Brydon Coverdale. This India series is looking lost and there is so shame in that, after all it took us 35 years to win over there and we couldn't do it when we were on a 16-0 run (granted VVS Laxman and Rahul Dravid had a lot to say, lets not go there ghosts of Eden Gardens!) so we need to use this series as learning and development for the future especially the immediate future after this, back to back Ashes series. Losses always make you stronger.

Here's my 11 for 3rd test. Clarke (to open), Watson, Warner, Kawaja, Cowan, Wade, Henriques, Maxwell, Johnson, Pattinson, Lyon. Starc 12th man

Posted by Jayzuz on (March 7, 2013, 4:33 GMT)

@Jose Puliampatta, you are far too pessimistic for my liking. Two test losses in deliberately exaggerated conditions like these is not the end of the world. Most (but not all) of the problems we see here are quite specific to these conditions, and that's the only logical conclusion you can draw given the fact that the team has been very successful over the past 2 1/2 years. The pace bowlers will really come into their own on even neutral tracks, and even the much-maligned Cowan is capable of scoring centuries against Steyn and co. Warner was averaging 47 coming into this series over an extended period, so you cannot say they haven't been grooming anyone. The fact is the young team will learn from this embarrassment, and be all the better for it. They have a good pace attack, several batsmen who are very good or at least potentially good, and even Lyon should improve over time. I hope to see them knuckle down over the next two tests, and I'm certain they will improve.

Posted by   on (March 7, 2013, 4:26 GMT)

I don't remember Warner ever sweeping before and if he has it would be a rare thing. So someone must have told him to start doing that, hearing what the coach is saying either there is a lack of communication between the batting coach and head coach or Warner has decided this is the way he is going to go about this but even then the head coach should already know about this.

Posted by   on (March 7, 2013, 4:25 GMT)

Arthur sends so many mixed messages that it's hard to know exactly what he is thinking. He has said that Phil Hughes is the leading run scorer but that they will consider Khwaja and Smith, that Lyon is a great bowler but they leave him out of the side, that Australia don't advocate rotation but seem to do it anyway. At least stick to one point of view and follow through with it. At the moment, all this chopping and changing is half of the problem. India had their woes as well, but have persisted with certain players and it has paid off - e.g. Kohli, Ashwin, Pujara. Australia need certainty in decision making and some cool heads - yes it will take time to get things right, and conditions in India are difficult to play in, but surely some stability in the team will ease the pressure.

Posted by farkin on (March 7, 2013, 4:12 GMT)

where not at rock bottom yet we still have "Mickey Arthur Gillard-Abbott "

Posted by Paul_Rampley on (March 7, 2013, 4:04 GMT)

@MitchFleming i take your general point, Khawaja has earned a call up based on shield runs, and that's the bottom line. Siddle is identified as test match specialist, so he must play all test matches, but he is not the pace leader on this tour(will be for the ashes). There needs to be some body else who is faster like Pattinson/Cummins/RyanHarris for this tour. There also needs to be a bowler who can take wickets with new ball like Hilfenhaus/Starc. There needs to be 1 more bowler who can take wickets with reverse swing and bowl steadily at other times (like Watson/SteveWaugh).

Posted by AidanFX on (March 7, 2013, 3:19 GMT)

Adding two allrounders did nothing to strengthen the bowling nor the batting in fact both were weakened. It is like an extended tail. One allrounder needs to be dropped. Go back to 3 quicks - Bring in either Starc or Johnson. One spinner. If it was my way - I would prefer Lyon but I know Doherty will be in. I don't think his perfomance superseded Lyon's - it was one batsmen who blew the latter away. Lyon's economy rate was fine till then. He is for mine a better bowler.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (March 7, 2013, 2:34 GMT)

Mitch Fleming not sure where you did your maths. Khawaja is 438 out 11 times. Average almost 40. If he got a pair in his last shield match he has 438 runs out 9 times. that average is 47 (nowhere near 55).

Posted by redneck on (March 7, 2013, 2:22 GMT)

yes thats the answer mickey lets select more bits and pieces players and call them the best we have to offer!!! mate you coached WA, you know we have certain players who are continually overlooked. shaun marsh isnt in the squad but should be, like wise furgerson, cosgrove, rogers even doolen would be a worthy selection. these players named are seasoned campainers at shield cricket ok so they may not have much in the way of experience in indian conditions but they have a lot of red ball cricket under their belts. they are more likely to put up a fight when the goings tough than younger more brash T20 minded cricketers. darren lehman is the perfect example, kept out of the national side for most of his carrer when he did debut he was an instant vetren in the team as he had as many first class runs and matches as anyone he was sharing the australian dressing room with. afl needs youth as the game is about leg speed, cricket is not so why do we look at selection in the same manner as afl??

Posted by   on (March 7, 2013, 2:18 GMT)

Khawaja and David Hussey should both be in the team because they can play spin. Hughes and Warner were always going to fail in India, just as they'll fail in England against swing. Best they stick to the shorter forms of the game. Steve Smith has done nothing to suggest he can play test cricket, but I guess he comes from NSW so he'll get lots of chances to embarrass himself. Clarke definitely needs to move up the order.

Posted by hycIass on (March 7, 2013, 1:20 GMT)

@Mary while there's something to that, the selection of bowlers and batters leaves much to be desired. As I said, there's no point selecting a spinner if he's not up to it simply because the team should have a specialist spinner. Selecting 20/20 and one day all rounders is no way to strengthen a bowling attack. If your four best bowlers in the squad are quicks/medium pace then that's who makes the team. Clarke and Warner will have to do given that the Indian spinners make our "specialists" look like what they are: great club / good Shield bowlers.And just when our top order can be improved by bringing in Khawaja, somehow Smith comes into the equation when he is clearly not the answer to our batting issues. I am not sure why Khawaja can't be treated like the other players, but the kid should get 4-5 games to show what he can do, clearly most of the public can see he is a good player. The results are embarrassing and the batting is a large part of that.

Posted by crh8971 on (March 7, 2013, 0:54 GMT)

There is a lot of rubbish being spruiked in this forum. As a principle it would be good to get back to selecting players that are in form and performing in FC cricket rather than attempting to make the miracle like selection. Two good examples are Jackson Bird, who was taking a stack of wickets in FC and came in and bowled superbly in his first 2 tests, and Henriques, who despite being a controversial selection had actually taken plenty of wickets & runs this season. For what it is worth based on the rule that you can only pick players on the tour my 11 for the 3rd test would be: 1. Warner 2. Cowan 3. Kawahja 4. Clarke 5. Smith 6. Henriques 7. Wade 8. Maxwell 9. Johnson 10. Pattinson 11. Lyon

Posted by Edwards_Anderson on (March 7, 2013, 0:46 GMT)

Clarke can't do this all on his own. Khawaja has to come in to the top 6, he is one of the better players in the long format. We have picked guys to a bits and pieces role. Your top 6 in the order should be your top 6 batsmen in the country, . Your best wicketkeeper and your 4 best bowlers (who aren't bunnies which most Australian bowlers aren't these days) for the conditions. We have diluted the side with so many changes and rotations and last minutes 'gut feelings'. One thing I have learnt in team sport (amateur I must say) is that each player must know their role. Granted its not easy when players aren't really throwing their hands up (like batsmen used to when our dominant team was playing)

Posted by   on (March 7, 2013, 0:45 GMT)

Clarke and Watson, captain and vice captain also got out to cross bat shots in the first innings, not good examples for the rest of the team. In both dismissals the ball stayed lower than expected, a straight bat instead of horizontal would have saved them.

Posted by Mary_786 on (March 7, 2013, 0:02 GMT)

@Chicagoan76 yes agree fully, Khawaja is the test batsman and Smith doesn't compare but as in the past it wouldn't surprise me if we find another way to keep Khawaja on the bench.@Robofk why are you making up stuff about Khawaja's aveage, he averages 30 from 6 matches and at any one time he had 2 matches in a row so never got the chance to establish himself. @Beertjie well said mate. @Flemingmitch you are a knowledgeable reader, yes i read about the lbw decisions which got referred and got Khawaja's average down from 55 to 40. And in order to face spin properly playing back and waiting is fine, just play through the line not across it. Playing forward is fine IF you can get right on top of the ball and smother the spin. The issue is that none of the Australian batsmen other than Clarke are confident enough to use their feet to good effect. The best way to play spin is to not let the ball spin. I played some very good spinners in the women's competition and this is how we dealt with it.

Posted by   on (March 7, 2013, 0:01 GMT)

watson cowan warner clarke wade henriques maxwell johnson pattinson lyon doherty

Posted by Paul_Rampley on (March 6, 2013, 23:51 GMT)

@ChrisP having grown up in NSW and played alot of grade cricket myself i have seen NSW go through its up and downs. With regards Khawaja i am not sure what you are referring to but he is one of the better players of spin as he has matured. I remember his knock last season when he got 60 odd against a Tasmanian attack which had Doherty and Kreza. Similarly most of his runs came at the SCG where he averages 50+(I remember you mentioning that he doesn't do well at the SCG). Mate i am happy for you to check these stats if you want to but lets not make a case against Khawaja when the facts don't support it.

Posted by HansonKoch on (March 6, 2013, 23:28 GMT)

What's Khawaja done that's warranted such fanboism? Last time I looked he was another Cowan.

Hughes is clearly the best domestic player we have, way ahead of Khawaja, yet we can see him floundering. Chris Rogers is the most obvious candidate to step up. But yes, he's getting a bit old.

Steve Smith is the new Ian Harvey. Best to leave him for the IPL.

Unless we can win with this batting lineup we're basically screwed is the right answer.

Posted by Chicagoan76 on (March 6, 2013, 23:25 GMT)

BTW, I feel compelled to say a word or 2 about Pujara. No I am not jumping on the band wagon. I first noticed this guy maybe a year ago and knew that he would be a star for India. Its amazing how they have such depth of batting talent. Hope this young guy can keep his head straight unlike some of the other young batsmen of his generation.

Posted by williaml on (March 6, 2013, 23:14 GMT)

If this is all Mickey Arthur could offer, saying this is the best Australia could offer at the moment as far as players are concerned, then it is time to look for another coach who would not offer such lame excuses. This is the lowest Australian cricket can get and it seems that CA is putting up with mediocrity so a complete overhaul is needed from the top. Starting with Inverarity for absolutely poor selection choices. If this rabble is allowed to continue the God help us in the Ashes.

Posted by MinusZero on (March 6, 2013, 22:37 GMT)

Its a sad state of affairs if, as Arthur said, this is the best batsmen Australia has to offer. Khawaja should bat at 3, Clarke 4 and Watson (if selected) at 5. Smith shouldnt even be there. Doolan should be on the next plane to India.

Posted by Shaggy076 on (March 6, 2013, 22:17 GMT)

Shani - We saw a tour in Australia where Ashwin wasnt even 50% of Lyon or doesnt your memory extend back that far.

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (March 6, 2013, 22:16 GMT)

The very fact players like Smith are being considered smacks of desperation for Australia. Smith has shown himself to be a sprayer and will be easy pickings for India's power hitters. Even Warner's a better option than Smith.

Posted by Nampally on (March 6, 2013, 22:03 GMT)

I think Arthur & Clarke are providing Band Aid solution to a major problem, with just one replacement & change of batting order. Smith is an excellent fielder & a useful bat who can also bowl leg spin. But the Aussies are short on bowling as well. Asuming Watson & Clarke bat #3 & 4, & compile 400. Is OZ bowling good enough to get the Indian batmen out twice? Aussies need Johnson to go in tandem with Pattinson + Lyon to go in tandem with Docherty with a fifth bowler like Henriques to keep the runs down over long spell of bowling. With these 5 tied up in definite roles, Cowan, Warner, Watson, Clarke, Smith /Khwaja + Wade, make the XI. This presents a more balanced option with both Johnson & Pattinson capable of taking wkts.+ spin option to counter the Indian spinners. Henriques looked good as an economical bowler, in addition to his batting heroics of First Test. Johnson is a useful batsman with experience of Indian conditions. Lyon is the best Aussie off spinner in this squad.

Posted by Sprojy on (March 6, 2013, 21:54 GMT)

The selectors have obvious arrogance and will not admit to being wrong with the squad selection. However, they don't necessarily need to as they could easily justify sending over SOK as a replacement for Bird and Haddin as a replacement keeper given Wade's cheek injury. Then they could say both have been impressive in the nets (as they always say) and there you go, we get our best spinner and a quality player of spin into the team as a pure batsman and selectors save face which is their priority given winning is certainly not.

Posted by popcorn on (March 6, 2013, 21:51 GMT)

How can the Think Tank forget Mitchell Johnson's fabulous performance the last time we played at Mohali?5 for 64. Phil Hughes amnd Shane Watson should be dumped. Usman Khawaja and Mitchell Johnson in their places.

Posted by immi2711 on (March 6, 2013, 21:28 GMT)

As much as I hate Pakistan batting techniques (and believe me I loath it and this is comming from a Pakistani fan), OZz need to go into a sleep mode when it comes to batting in the sub-continent. period. It migh not look the best in average, and all the commentators are going to complain about it, but thats what you need to do...At the very least OZ openers need to to forget about scoring, and just buckle down, and rotate for god's sake, that is fundamental.

Posted by Sanj747 on (March 6, 2013, 21:28 GMT)

Just watching Cook and Trott batting against NZ. How settled do the look compared to Australia. A long road lies ahead for Australia. Too many selectors involved and not making the right choices.

Posted by Charlie101 on (March 6, 2013, 21:15 GMT)

The Aussie problems centre about the selectors . Hughes was in the side with Simon Kattich at home too old to play !! As soon as hussey retired Clarke should have insisted he came on the tour. I do not know what his Sheffield Shield form is like but he certainly would score runs in the top 4 than the current players

Posted by Bonehead_maz on (March 6, 2013, 21:11 GMT)

The problems Australia has had in developing spinners can be seen simply by looking at the current Western Australian squad.

Beer (who by the way was unavailable due to injury for this series) is their established spinner.

Ashton Turner (who played in tour matches for composite Aust against Sri Lanka and West Indies this season) our best spinner from U 19 squad 2012 hasn't yet made a 1st class debut.

Ashton Agar (The second spinner in the U 19 side) looks promising.

Now seeing WA will almost never play more than one spinner, who doesn't play ? Worse still, selectors are forced to identify them now before they are 20 (before their career is over) and still their careers are virtually over.

I recommend CA pick 2 or 3 of the better youngsters and pay them to play a season of Ranji ! Far better to "learn" how to take wickets than sitting in a squad watching from the sidelines !

Please remember Ashwin was the new superstar BEFORE India last toured Australia - looked like fruit here !

Posted by mzm149 on (March 6, 2013, 21:06 GMT)

Usman Khwaja might play spin better than others because it may be in his genes due to his Pakistani origin :P

Posted by wellrounded87 on (March 6, 2013, 20:50 GMT)

It's interesting too see everyone bag Lyon and saying he's no Ashwin. In Australia Lyon outperformed Ashwin quite easily, he even has better statistics than Swann. Lyon (unlike Doherty who's useless everywhere) is a good spinner on typical seaming pitches. He hasn't worked out how to bowl on the dustbowls yet but i'm sure his experience in India will help him develop. But all in all very few spinners from outside the subcontinent do well in the subcontinent. The conditions are very alien and the home side batsmen are used to facing spinners who know the conditions very well. Warne only averaged in the 40's in India

Posted by poms_have_short_memories on (March 6, 2013, 20:49 GMT)

Me thinks the Warne manifesto is starting to carry some weight.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 20:21 GMT)

Neither Lyon nor Doherty will get it going in India. They are not even 10% of Ashwin or Bhajji and certainly not even 1% of the Great Warne.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 20:18 GMT)

I think Aussies will have to dig down a bit in the way Vijay and Pujara paced their innings in the 2nd might benefit their rookies!

Posted by Keatsyindahouse on (March 6, 2013, 20:11 GMT)

If the Aussies don't pick a bowling line up of Lyon, Johnson, Pattinson....they have lost the plot! I would add Doherty and Henriques to this too. This would give Aussies their best chance to take 20 wickets, but more importantly Aussie could keep India's 1st Inning total under 550! Batting in the 1st Test 1st Innings by Aus was acceptable (390 odd?), however they were not a chance of getting wickets apart from lyon (at times) and pattinson. Hughes looks ordinary, however think Aus needs to stick with him. Too much talent. Watson needs a 100 in the next 2 tests or he may have to go. My XI: Warner, Hughes, Watson, Clarke, Cowan, Wade, Henriques, Johnson, Pattinson, Doherty, Lyon. If looking to change a batsmen Khawaja comes in, however that means Watson or Hughes gets dropped...and i would like to stick with them in the hope of runs before England!

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 20:10 GMT)

India is always a tough place to tour but we ought to be doing better. Hughes needs to go and either a George Bailey or David Hussey brought into the side to bolster around 6 or 7. Watson is paid too much money for too little return and there would be little to lose with playing, say, Doolan instead, or maybe as part of the touring party to England. Thing is, can you bring in fresh players to a named tour group? Cowan, Warner,Watson, Clarke, Wade, Bailey/Hussey, Smith, Johnson, Siddle, Doherty, Starc/Lyon. Khwaja and Hughes are just not stacking up at the moment.

Posted by Chris_P on (March 6, 2013, 19:51 GMT)

@jmcilhinney. Agree with Hughes, he has been found out with spin. Khawaja? From the games I saw him for NSW on the spin friendly SCG track, he didn't look comfortable, & let's not forget he didn't really face quality spinners either. Surprisingly for those who haven't seen him for a few seasons, Smith has actually worked on his technique & looks a far more accomplished player (with form to back him up). He uses his feet well to spinners & has a tight defence. I would take Khawaja ahead of Smith for England, but on turning tracks, Smith would be my preference. That said, the 2 form batsmen (Clarke aside & Ponting's retirement) are both still playing in the Sheffield Shield, so not sure why the criteria to select form players (Doolan & Rogers as batsmen & O'Keefe as a spinner) was ignored.

Posted by blink182alex on (March 6, 2013, 19:46 GMT)

Arthur says this is the best possible squad. I don't know about anyone else but for me our absolute best test match side for English and home conditions is this:

1. Watson 2. Warner 3. Rogers 4. Clarke 5. Voges 6. Khawaja / D.Hussey 7. Wade 8. Pattinson 9. Harris 10. Siddle 11. Lyon

If they continue to muck about with selections like Maxwell, Doherty, Cowan, Smith and to a lesser extent Henriques we will get thrashed by England.

Posted by Thefakebook on (March 6, 2013, 19:26 GMT)

@Selassie-Ion (March 6, 2013, 11:37 GMT) Mate its not funny Warner and Watson battered the indians in the T20 WC remember I know its not t20 so lets not even begin that debate,what I'm saying is Watto either opens or leaves.And chopping and changing here is not by desire but more of compulsion.Glenn selected as 2nd spinner was a joke,Hughes can't get a run so retaining him is useless,MJ should been there from day 1 of 1st test.Lyon or Xavier don't matter much. Starc must be back as Mohali wicket has a bit of swing and bounce in it.Look mate this not a real series its an experimental 4 test to pick 3 or 4 new guys for Ashes,already Maxwell is out for good.Moises is in.I can't see an OZ win in the series (I loved to though). Better 2-2(most unlikely),2-1,3-1,3-0 than 4-0.Good on you any way.

Posted by BenGundry on (March 6, 2013, 18:53 GMT)

I agree with Rajesh Dahari's team, except Henriques should bat above Wade. Either Hughes or Watson has to go with Khawaja coming in at #5, Hughes is most likely. Henriques has been good with the bat, so there's no room for Smith or Maxwell. Then four specialist bowlers, two quicks and two spinners (with Henriques the 3rd seamer). I think Johnson is the man to partner Pattinson. Both Lyon and Doherty have to play.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 18:44 GMT)

i am a fan of steve smith.....but only one can play should be usman...please fly in rogers,hussey or xi warner, watson,cowan,clarke,usman,smith/henriques,wade,johson,pattison,lyon,doherty/siddle

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 18:30 GMT)

what i would prefer is a team like this- David Warner,Ed cowan , Shane Watson ,Usman Khawaja , Micheal Clarke , Matt wade , Steven smith, Glenn Maxwell , Mitchell Johnson , James pattisnson , Xavier doherty/nathon Lyon this would be the best team i would suggest .This team has a good bowling as well as a good batting strength.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 17:48 GMT)

i think jonson shuld have a game right now...and the playing eleven should be warner , cowan , watson , clark , khawaja , wade ,henriques ,jonhson ,pattinson , doherty ,lyon

Posted by Chicagoan76 on (March 6, 2013, 17:36 GMT)

Do not understand how they can talk about Khawaja and Steve Smith in the same sentence - only one of them is a true test player. This interview reads very much like what Arthur has been saying for months - same old comments about surely now we will likely probably possibly plausibly give one or both or all three of them a chance, a choice, a go at it, surely now, me lads.

Posted by TestOfTime on (March 6, 2013, 17:33 GMT)

@sriram_iyengar, I like your rationale and your lineup. It may work. However, Wade at 3 is a very bold move and I am not sure his technique will hold up for no.3. Clarke 3, Wade 4 may not be a bad option. I was going to suggest MichJohnson but having a person as erratic as him in a 2 man pace attack could be dangerous. Lyon and Doherty make a lot of sense as a spin pair.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 17:23 GMT)

I like the fact that Australia acknowledges its flaws and is working hard to turn things around. I remember when India was destroyed by England, and Australia - the Indian team had no interest in fixing up their act, Dhoni and the rest of the team kept blaming conditions. Good attitude, but being an Indian I still hope India wins in Mohali.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 17:20 GMT)

"Make JOHNSON Iin for Siddle and let Smith replace Hughes.Take Lyon in for Mexwell and make Clark to play in at no. 3 all will come in favour of you.Being a neutral it surprised me a lot to see Clark batting too mutch down in the order in spite of the dream form he is.Now he has to play the anchor role and he can't hide himself hd has to learn quickly that he needs to play a founder role that has been played by the greats of the game.Up to now I have seen the prob with Australia is that the players who are in good touch are coming so late when the game getz slipped away from their hands!""

Posted by Webba84 on (March 6, 2013, 17:16 GMT)

@Bloody_Hell Actually you can pick the same team and get different results IF said team learns and improves. The only way to build a number 1 team is completely reliant on this concept. Or do you think Warne and Ponting etc never failed? Or perhaps you think they 'finished' learning how to play at some point and never had to keep thinking and improving every game? That's how a child understands the world, mate.

Posted by ThatsJustCricket on (March 6, 2013, 17:06 GMT)

@bajwa_rulez on (March 6, 2013, 8:09 GMT) very you sound exactly like the Indian whiners in Aus :) Besides, if you were watching the same matches then you would know that was exactly what team India received in Aus - green hard tracks with lots and lots of grass. Honestly, don't see anything wrong in it either way. Any team who wants to become world beaters needs to prove it on all sorts of pitches and not just on their favorite ones.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 17:04 GMT)

Agree with AKS286.give klinger a chance

Posted by ThatsJustCricket on (March 6, 2013, 16:57 GMT)

Lachlan Burgess on (March 6, 2013, 11:00 GMT) : please tell me you were not asleep when you wrote this :) Smith, to be the front line spinner for Aus??? The future must be really bleak....

Posted by Ragav999 on (March 6, 2013, 16:56 GMT)

@nzcricket: Agree with you that the guys like Chris Rogers, D Hussey, Katich are virtually unknown in the media these days. Add Steve O' Keefe to the mix and you have a great core of players who have every right to feel hard done by. They picked M Hussey when he was almost 30 and they have ignored his younger brother who has an even better first class record. This is mind boggling to say the least. Where are those newspaper columnists/reporters who wanted Hussey and Ponting sacked? They are partly responsible for simultaneous exits of the modern greats Ponting and Hussey. They performed better than the youngsters even during their rock bottom phase. This is not an indictment on the younger guys, but the media should be more responsible in using their voice.

Posted by Tharunnira on (March 6, 2013, 16:43 GMT)

Hats of Aussies, just two failure in a different condition, and what a preparation for the next matches, will it happen from the a mediocre team Like India, it can happen only a a champion team because winning is their habit. But not need to have much preparation, the Indians are going to be complacent will throw it away and you can win the rest of the match easily and you will not lose the serious, Great Australia go ahead.

Posted by sriram_iyengar on (March 6, 2013, 16:15 GMT)

Play Khwaja for Hughes. Move Wade up the order and Watson down. Wade is in some decent form and puts some price on to his wicket. Watson will play free at 6 and will add confidence to the team. Play Lyon for Maxwell. Retain Doherty as he is economical. Mohali will still turn though its known to be fast-bowler friendly. Move Clarke to 4. Siddle & Pattinson are the best fast bowlers for aus now, so are Warner & Cowan to open the batting. Playing X1 for Mohali. 1. Warner 2. Cowan 3. Wade 4. Clarke 5. Khwaja 6. Watson 7. Henriques 8. Siddle 9. Pattinson 10. Lyon 11. Doherty

Posted by Has3 on (March 6, 2013, 16:12 GMT)

Aus squad: Watson, Warner, Cowan, Clarke, Khawaja, Wade, Henriques, Maxwell, Pattinson, Lyon, Doherty.

Aus need to go with 6 specialized batsman including Khuwaja ,two genuine spinners, two fast bowlers & a part time off-spiner who might help in a batting department as well. This team resembles very much with the home team who knows the conditions best.

Posted by CricketMaan on (March 6, 2013, 16:08 GMT)

If Clarke is the best player in that line up , shouldnt he bat No.3. Look where Trott, Amla and in the past Dravid, Ponting played. The best batsman plays No.3. If Watto is picked as batsman he should open, what is the point of having him at No.5, serves no purpose coz he will once again play spin. my XI Watto, Warner, Clarke, Khwaja, Cowan/Hughes/Smith/Maxwell or God knows, Wade, Moises, Mitch, Patto, Lyon, Xavier

Posted by Bloody_Hell on (March 6, 2013, 16:04 GMT)

Warner Watson Clarke Khawaja Smith Wade Henriques Johnson Pattinson Doherty Lyon

There is a reason you should only have 2 openers in a team. We have been carrying 4 and wondering why there is no middle order.

I ordinarily wouldn't be spruiking for Smith, but like Mickey says - can't pick the same team and expect a different result AND might as well give him some experience AND he actually plays spin well - Both Khawaja and Smith play spin well.

Posted by Robofk on (March 6, 2013, 16:01 GMT)

Some people are doing stupid selections by including players that are not in squad. Select best from current squad. I see lots of people saying Khawaja is good but look at his record he is avg only 18 from 14 international innings. Keep Hughes in team and Clarke should come at 4. My team is Cowan, Warner, Watson, Clarke, Hughes, Smith, Wade, Johnson, Pattinson, Lyon, Doherty. Selectors made mistake by not selecting either David Hussey or Adam Voges in the squad.

Posted by KannanAkil on (March 6, 2013, 15:28 GMT)

Good move Khawja is a good player of spin.And Smith have the experience in playing in Indian soil.The team should be Warner,Cowan,Clarke,Khawaja,Wade,Smith,Maxwell,Henriques,Johnson,Pattinson,Doherty

Posted by AKS286 on (March 6, 2013, 15:22 GMT)

My Team- Klinger, Watson, Marsh. Clarke, Voges, haddin, Moises, MJ, Kreja, Pattinson, Boyce. Boyce a leg spinner is a better option than off spinner. Why considering Usman & Smith? where is P.Forrest, and earlier it was told that Doolan will cover Punter. IMO Ferguson & Marsh are the next Hodge--- Talented but never selected. S.marsh is the ideal player of Sub-Continent.

Posted by shhanks on (March 6, 2013, 15:15 GMT)

the best way of putting some fight in remaining matches is by considering some batsmen and their position... the team must be reconstruct in following....

warner , cowan , watson , clark , khawaja ,smith, wade ,henriques ,jonhson ,pattinson , doherty

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 15:10 GMT)

I can't believe the drivel from Mickey Arthur's mouth. For the second test he justified Doherty's selection on his so-called great form in ODI matches, and Maxwell was the saviour all-rounder. I wonder if people are selected on form or on who is mates with whom.

Australia belted India in Oz in conditions which Aussie batters are used to and India's quicks were not up to standard. In India the shoe is on the other foot and a 4-0 result would not surprise.

Its instructive that Queensland are champions in all three formats atm yet do not have one player in the team while lead-foot batters and half-baked spinners are getting a run. If we are fair dinkum, Lyon in for Maxwell, Khawaja in for Hughes and Johnston in for Siddle. Swallow pride and listen to the experts. All through the 1st test, Indian TV commentators suggested Lyon was bowling the wrong length. Longer term thinking should include sending promising spinners and batsmen to play county or in India for a few months.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 15:08 GMT)

next to pup haddy is superb player of spin.... 3rd test line up for me would have been... cowan, warner, watto, kawaja, clarke, smith, haddin, moises, siddle, starc, lyon.... patterson deserve a rest from heavy workload he had in 2 test... once again player management.

Posted by phunny_game on (March 6, 2013, 14:58 GMT)

I have a feeling that Smith might be a stronger contender than khwaja, since he plays in the IPL, and can also contribute to the spin department... I know thats not he right choice but thats the way Aussie management has been thinking lately... I am an Indian btw.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 14:51 GMT)

It will be good when watson and warner opened up and cowan one down, phil hughes should bat at 5 after clarke. Then smith would be a better choice since he can bowl a part time leg spin and also a bat down with tailenders.

Posted by Swastik9 on (March 6, 2013, 14:26 GMT)

Aus squad: Cowan, Watson, Warner, Clarke, Khawaja, Wade, Henriques, Johnson, Pattinson, Lyon, Doherty.

Posted by SirViv1973 on (March 6, 2013, 14:12 GMT)

@Beertjie, In terms of no glaring admissions I was talking about the batting personel & Ferguson & Doolan where certainly not glaring admissions. I Know Ferguson in particular has his supporters but his FC record & lack of exposure to Ind conditions would suggest he would have done little better than those currently in possesion. I would completely agree with you regarding the bits & pieces players mentioned in your post. I posted several times prior to the series that CA have been obssessed for a long time with having an all rounder in the side but don't have one & should stop trying to create one & should therefore have stick with their best 4 bowlers, 6 batsman & keeper. As for Doherty I think his selection was also a major surprise I thought that Micheal Beer would have been the most likley left arm spinner to have been selected but I have barely seen his name mentioned recently.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 13:47 GMT)

OK you have batsmen that have faced these spinners on clay goat tracks 4 times and you want them to bring in noobies with no experience and expect them to do better?? Wow this is just ridiculous. Stick with our best 11 and maybe they will learn something and get better...

Posted by Gordo85 on (March 6, 2013, 13:39 GMT)

I dare you to pick both of them. Khawaja should get given a go in place of shockingly bad Hughes. Smith should come in for someone else maybe do this "We are now resting Dave Warner because we don't see the sense of playing him" They won't do it though but the other option is to drop Watson.

Posted by Bonehead_maz on (March 6, 2013, 13:34 GMT)

To all that suggest that any Australian batsmen (other than Clarke) are familiar with the conditions because they play in IPL - wow !!! So CSK play on pitches like 3rd day 1st Test ?

It's complete bunkum that these youngsters need to be given time to improve. They NEVER have moved their feet, and it's expected they suddenly will learn how to ? Clarke looked ok on debut in India, because he could bat properly beforehand.

Smith HAS to be considered, because he's the only other batsman in the squad that doesn't just plant his feet (Although Warner looks like he is trying to get the idea at times ).

Why is Australia this bad ? It's the result of turning cricket professional about 30 years ago. Where once, the best athletes in the land wanted to be Test cricketers, the talent pool is now limited to those that firstly want to be professional sportsmen, and secondly choose cricket - from 100% of the population to 5% of the population.

Wheres a Walters (other than banned for being human)

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 13:10 GMT)

MA should be sacked for even thinking of selecting Smith. The debacle of XD and GM simply wasn't good enough. Australia can still retain the B/G Trophy if they win the next two games ... To win the next two games we have to take 20-wickets in each test and this will not happen if you select XD, GM, SS or NL because you have a keeper who cannot keep to spinners. For me the only question is whether to select 5 or 6 fast bowlers. Yes .... It's a gamble but you have nothing to lose!!! Our best performing bowler on tour is a fast bowler .... Bring in Harris and Hilfenhaus .... Six pacemen and go hard or go home!!!

Posted by Beertjie on (March 6, 2013, 13:03 GMT)

Agree entirely about Arthur @ Bill Pollock. Check your facts before posting @by Ken McCarron on (March 6, 2013, 10:55 GMT) Steve Smith is NOT averaging better than Khawaja this season! Also Ferguson has scored a very large number of Shield runs this year. Please don't mislead when posting comments - check your facts! Mostly agree @Nutcutlet on (March 6, 2013, 11:44 GMT) but Hussey's Shield results this season are just too diabolical! @SirViv1973 on (March 6, 2013, 11:54 GMT), can't agree with you that Arthur is right regarding the batting personel. There were no glaring omissions from the initial squad & I didn't see too many complaints from oz fans at that time." There was a HUGE outcry about Maxwell, Doherty, Smith and Henriques in a squad of 17.I touted Rogers all season and others joined as he performed better. Doolan and Ferguson enjoyed support at the announcement when 17 were named! Even Haddin was mentioned continuously when only one keeper was taken. Check the posts!

Posted by hycIass on (March 6, 2013, 12:44 GMT)

@SK7634 for me Siddle goes out more a victim of circumstance than any lack of effort, three right arm seamers is not enough variety, Moises stays for his batting, Pattinson looks dangerous at express pace (plus his 5fer) so personally Siddle should miss this test (maybe swap with patto for the 4th as he is coming back from injury). @Oztraya i see your point about giving the right message, yes they should tell Khawaja he is playing so that he can prepare for the test rather then keeping them in a state of hope till the last day. Surely he can't do worse then the current top order. @Plaryer2942 Khawaja does play spin much more positively and yes he showed that in the warm up games. @BrutalAnalst very well said mate. He plays with a straight bat which is key to succeed in India. @MrKricket how has Khawaja had alot of chances, he has had at best 1 game at a time whereas others like Cowan have had 15 games in a row, do you think your statement still makes sense.

Posted by Beertjie on (March 6, 2013, 12:42 GMT)

Agree @Sprojy about passing the buck! First mis-step Arthur is that you should not base selection on "how we went in Australia" if you're preparing to play elsewhere than in South Africa. You need to note HOW the players performed under specific conditions, e.g., third and fourth day in Adelaide/Sydney. Granted the spinners in Australia are poor, but when studying the "footwork" of players or how they sweep, you can observe much. According to Invers Smith was taken (despite his inferior record, say, to Ferguson) because of his ability to play spin. Well let us all see this amazing footwork. Second, not sure that "This is our best young crop of batsmen that we have". Where is Doohan to counter the off-spin? Third, why only Wade when he just adds to the number of LHBs and was inept keeping to spin in Oz? His best comment? "Learn the harsh lessons of getting out and possibly losing their place because of it". How long do you want to keep them playing before doing something 'harsh' li

Posted by SirViv1973 on (March 6, 2013, 12:39 GMT)

@Edwards_Anderson. I think you hit the nail on the head re Khawlja almost every oz fan on here seems to be demanding his inclusion but they have to realise he is not suddenly going to come in & transform the batting. His record to date, in a somewhat short test career is modest, an ave of 29 in 11 inns with just 1 half century, but he has been out of the side for sometime & has probably earned the right to have another crack.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 12:38 GMT)

David Hussey is Best Option

Posted by Fleming_Mitch on (March 6, 2013, 12:34 GMT)

I love how guys keep quoting Khawaja's average of 40 in shield this season. What they are not mentioning is that he was aveaging 55 before his final shield game before christmas before coping 2 dubious lbw decisions which were referred to the match referee by the Bulls. He was also the leading shield scorer until that game, so lets get it straigh that he has earned his spot in the Aussie team based on solid shield runs and alot of credit for that goes to boof who has mentored him this season. Thanks to him the Bulls are second on the shield table and looking to win their second shield title. Its no conincidence we haven't won a shield game since Khawaja left for the Aussie team.In the past I spoke up for Phil Hughes. To me he was a thin version of Virender Sehwag; a chitty-chitty bang-bang opener. But both have been found out; their lack of technique noted by their opponents.Also a Test match is not a place to learn. You go to a school to learn, not to a demanding workplace to learn.

Posted by heathrf1974 on (March 6, 2013, 12:30 GMT)

My team for the next test is Watson, Cowan, Warner, Clarke, Khawaja, Wade, Henriques, Maxwell, Johnson, Pattinson, Lyon

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 12:27 GMT)


I get what you're saying and anything's possible but it does sound absurd. Simply because it takes two to tango. Team India is striking form across the board and it would take Australia more than a miracle to beat them in the remaining 2 tests...that too in spinning conditions.

Posted by Mary_786 on (March 6, 2013, 12:25 GMT)

@Oztraya i echo your every word mate, but i am sure this time Khawaja will get a better go at the spot. I wish Hughes well but I thought he was hidden from the South African's by Inverarity who used Quiney as cannon fodder and then given an easy ride against Sri Lanka. He turned in a Marcus North impersonation in the ODIs (two three figure scores and three single figure scores) and looked like a blind man against quality spin on the subcontinent.If Hughes had come through against the South African series averaging 30-something I would have more confidence of him performing in England. As it is cricket is still a mind game and the English pacemen will be grinning with glee and lining up to bowl across Hughes and have him chop on or caught in the cordon trying to cut balls that shouldn't be cut.In my opinion Hughes was rushed back too fast. He should have been left in Shield and County cricket for two full seasons of each to get some steel and hunger into him.

Posted by whofriggincares on (March 6, 2013, 12:25 GMT)

"when I looked at them and said this is going to be the toughest cricket you have ever played , and they said yeah yeah right" . The key coaching point here is to pull them up and reinforce the fact. Not sit back and say I told you so after the failure. As a youth rep coach myself I made this mistake once, you must make the group understand the time is now not next game not next tour. If Aurthurs had reinforced this fact rather than taking the they will see attitude they may be minimising their losses and not losing by an innings+. You must be proactive as a coach not reactive.

Posted by Sunil_Batra on (March 6, 2013, 12:17 GMT)

@oztraya is absolutely correct. Khawaja has been mistreated in the past, he got at best 1-2 games at any one time. He got 70 in a record chase against SA in their homeground against Steyn, Morkel, and Philander and got run out on 40 next game and then was dropped a game after that. He was the shield batsman of the year in 2010 and was in the shield team of the year in 2009, 10 and 11. In 2012 he played half a season and was unfairly dropped so of course you can't expect him to perform. He went back this season under Lehman and was 2nd on shield scoring and 3rd in Ryobi by the christmas break after which he hasn't played a shield game. He has earned his opportunity and any other readers suggesting otherwise will not be prepared to give him a fair go regardless of what he scores. Cowan has ha 15 games in a row so how about we give this guy perhaps a third of those games, not asking much.I predict he will do great in this series if he is given an opportunity.

Posted by VivGilchrist on (March 6, 2013, 12:06 GMT)

I'm over Arthur. I'm over the mentality of the selectors. Before the series started the fans were saying that Clarke had to bat higher in India, and OKeefe had to be picked. Bring in Boof, ship out Arthur and we're half way there.

Posted by SirViv1973 on (March 6, 2013, 12:00 GMT)

Just to add to my previous: perhaps the biggest question which needs answering is regarding Shield & grade cricket and is it still good enough to produce batsman of genuine test quality or is this just a lean period for Aus following the best part of 2 decades of world domination?

Posted by Batmanian on (March 6, 2013, 11:56 GMT)

Re Cowan 'Is he going to win us games? Not sure' is the most transparent part of the selectors' commitment in him. The thing is, though, you can be a stop-gap kind of guy who is also a match winner. Does anyone remember Michael Hussey? If they're that open that Cowan is there for his good attitude, bring in old man Rogers... or even Brad Hodge. I think the entire country prefers the disappointment of Watson falling way short of his potential, and Warner too, to Cowan performing at his.

Posted by SirViv1973 on (March 6, 2013, 11:54 GMT)

I think Arthur is right regarding the batting personel. There were no glaring omissions from the initial squad & I didn't see too many complaints from oz fans at that time. Without going backwards to players like D Hussey, Voges & Rogers, the current group of batsman in Ind is just about the best Aus has right now. Perhaps a Doolan or Burns could be considered for the ashes along with one of the above to add a little experience to the middle order but by in large oz are stuck with the current batch & will have to hope that given further experience they can improve. I just don't think there is any quick fix to Aus current batting woes & making wholesale changes will not solve anything.

Posted by blink182alex on (March 6, 2013, 11:51 GMT)

Well Arthur really is brainless if he thinks that we have selected the best possible squad out here. Steve Smith is no where near the top 6 batsmen in the country, it is just so obvious to everyone it is painful. We have seen him time and time again in odi cricket against good teams England, South Africa etc that he does not have the technique or patience to success consistently. He may get the odd 30 with his natural talent but he will not win a test match for Australia with his batting.

I can tell you right now why he was selected for this tour, it was because he went well in the last IPL. That's right, a domestic T20 tournament, you cannot select a test batsmen on that criteria. The fact that Smith is on this tour and has played more tests than Rogers, Dave Hussey and Voges combined is beyond belief. The England team must be praying that we select Smith, Maxwell, Doherty, Henriques, Wade and Cowan. Wake up selectors!

Posted by Nutcutlet on (March 6, 2013, 11:44 GMT)

As everybody here has commented, the compositon of the touring squad is hugely flawed. It may be that Oz left behind S O'Keefe, Ferguson, etc, but what seems to be missing is top-order ballast (although Cowan sold his wicket for as high a price as he could get for it). Michael Clarke is stands alone as 70% of the run-scoring potential & even he found himself gifting his wicket in the 1st inns because no one could stay with him. So, this tour has turned into a gruesome experiment. The question is: who can provide ballast in sufficient quantity to allow MC to flourish - to take the fight to the oppo? Two players who could (& IMO should) have been on tour are D Hussey & C Rogers. There is no substitute for experience & in TC terms that means players who know their game. It's likely that both will be required v Eng as the current crop are wilting under the Indian sun, confidence in shreds. Dropping Lyon was insane, a sign of panic. A non-bowling Watson is not worth a place.Desperate times!

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 11:44 GMT)

To be honest. Smith isn't a good bowler at all. Australia don't have any great turners of the ball. Khawaja is okay but not as great. Watson and Warner both have to open with Conan at 3 and 4 Clarke. I really wished Watson took the risk and bowled for Australia as he still is the better bowler in the team, has great seam position and natural swing. I swear there was so many test batters that couldn't play 1-2 years ago? and now where did they go? This is sad.

Posted by Kailesh.Patel on (March 6, 2013, 11:38 GMT)

Aussie Line up i want to see >> Warner, Cowan, Khwaja, Clarke, Wade, Henriques, Smith/Maxwell, Johnson, Pattinson, Lyon, Doherty .. one cannot play with 2 batting all rounders and just 3 main bowlers ... it is much better to have 4 main bowlers of which 2 can bat a bit ..

Posted by Selassie-I on (March 6, 2013, 11:37 GMT)

@ Posted by Thefakebook on (March 6, 2013, 11:14 GMT) Watson and warner "A solid opening pair" that's the funniest thing i've read this year! Guess you haven't watched any of Australia's matches in the last year.

How about sticking with your team Australia and stop chopping and changing every game, show a bit of confidence in your players. Part time spinners will be useless against India and I certainly wouldn't be expecting anything but rank turners from now on (Fair enough of course). If you must change then pick 2 spinners or find a fast bowler who can bowl in sub-continental conditions - one of the probelms in havign a young, raw pace attack who can all hurl the ball down at 90+ mph is that they simply don't have the guile or experience, yet, to bowl on wickets that aren't conducive to seam or bounce.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 11:36 GMT)

Stop picking bit part players, Traditional team. Proposed team from available squad

1 & 2 Pick best two openers for tests from Warner & Watson 3 - Hughes 4 - Clarke - 5 - Henriques - 6 - Kawaja - batsman of future - needs confidence might be 10 year player 7 - Keeper - Wade, very good number 7, make good 60/70s, not big tons as required at #6 batting ability is irrelevant from here on in. dont pick all rounders who are average at at both skills. choose combination of 3 pace & 1 spin or 2 pace & 2 spin pick most best 4 bowlers, batting ability

best pacemen in order 1 - pattinson 2 - sidds 3 - starc 4 - johnson all can hold a bat spin 1 - lyon 2 maxwell, Doherty not up to it. lyon might become a good offie in a couple of years, needs to learn, learn by playing.

ashes team (& squad) for eng

1 -Watson 2 - Warner/Cowan 3 - Hughes 4 - Clarke 5 - Bailey 6 - Henriques / D Hussey / North 7 - Wade / Paine 8 - Pato / Cummings 9 - sids 10 - Bird / Hilfy 11 - Lyon

Posted by Shaggy076 on (March 6, 2013, 11:35 GMT)

Oztraya- Maybe its because he is averaging 29 in 6 tests and only 39 in the shield this season. Ever thought of that? S Marsh and Khawaja were in the same side initially, S Marsh made a 100. Quiney was the highest run scorer for two consecutive seasons in the shield. Hughes was the highest run score until he was picked again. You might have an argument if Khawaja stats said you must pick me but they dont. Then the Australian selectors gave him a one-day game when more credentialled one-day players like Fergusson were left out.

Posted by ozziespirit on (March 6, 2013, 11:28 GMT)

Kawaja and Smith were pretty much ruined by their Ashes experience, so this does not look good for the next few years. The same tired players are turned to again and again for a solution just because we've no one else in the cupboard. We need more players coming through the academies and fast. @Mitty2: With the exception of SA, we've spent the last year playing real minnow teams and we rarely get wash outs which other countries get, so comparing Aus and Eng win/loss record is misleading, and pure fanatsy given the current state of Australian cricket.

Posted by Ms.Cricket on (March 6, 2013, 11:26 GMT)

CA please get rid of Mickey Arthur ASAP. This man thinks fantasy.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 11:16 GMT)

This might sound completely absurd but Australia could still retaqin the border -gavaskar trophy were they to win the last two. Cricket is a funny game. I would give Hughes one more shot to get things right!

Posted by Thefakebook on (March 6, 2013, 11:14 GMT)

Clarke Should bat 4 because Watson and Warner is a solid opening pair.And Steady Eddy can come one down.Mathew Waste at 6 he will be good at 7 and batting will look solid.My team for 3rd test will be 1.Warner 2.Watson 3.Cowan 4.CLARKE 5.Usman 6.Smith/Henriques 7.Wade 8.Jhonson 9.Patto 10.Starc 11 Lyon(YES Nathan LYON is back)or Xavier ;)

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 11:12 GMT)

Mickey Arthur is rightly being pilloried in Aus as are the whole National Selection Panel, they have stuffed up big time, plus the so called stars of the team were over-confident because they smashed India here in Aus last year.

I would have taken Bailey and given Ferguson a shot, both have solid techniques, unlike Maxwell, Hughes, Watson.

Posted by ozwriter on (March 6, 2013, 11:03 GMT)

for the international readers, khawaja has been the worst treated player in australian cricket. we can only speculate at the reasons.

He made his debut as an injury replacement for ponting for one game. he was 'next in line' when a batting position came up. but what happened next was astonishing. ponting was dropped to no. 5 first shaun marsh came in ahead of khawaja at no. 3 and failed. then watson got injured and a player of average quality for many years, cowan, came in. then they gave a guy called quiney a go against south africa. then ponting retired and the couldn't resist there love for hughes who was previously dropped twice. ok maybe khawaja next? no, then hussey retired and wade was chose to move up to 6.

all this while greats of the game like chris gayle,michael hussey, darryl lehmann, ian chappell, shane warne, and mark taylor are ALL saying that khawaja should be given a chance. but for reasons not known to the rest of us, khawaja is being deliberately overlooked

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 11:00 GMT)

I think it's a fantastic option to bring Smith in the side. He is such an interesting player, but it's not just that - he is a fantastic leggy in my opinion and he can handle the bat pretty decently as well. But all in all, most people don't see it, but I do, that he can be Australia's frontline spinner. Well, it's a start.

Posted by Sanj747 on (March 6, 2013, 10:58 GMT)

@yorkshire-86 and @munafmirza both spot on.

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

Clarke has to bat 3 in india. watson either opens with warner or he doesnt play at all. Im not sold on Khawaja, ave 39 in a shield season, crikey 10 years ago he wouldnt even make a state side. team from available players for next test would be warner, watson, clarke, hughes, Khawaja, Henriques, Wade, Johnson, Pattinson, Lyon, Doherty. team if all players available would be Warner, Watson, Marsh, Clarke, Ferguson, Burns, Hartley, Faulkner, Johnson, Pattinson, (Beer or Holland)

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

@Appu Dasa - a big deal was made of the preparations to combat spin, including a week long 'spin camp' that, yes, was run with Warne's assistance. Clearly it did not work. At all.

As to the article, I am continually frustrated by higher-ups flatly saying that we have 'the best possible team'. Clearly this is not the case. Hughes is a horrible selection for this series. Khawaja should not have been sitting on the bench. Bailey should be over there. Ferguson should have Smith's berth. O'Keefe should be in for Maxwell. If Watto isn't bowling he's worth less than a Doolan, Klinger, White, or Burns. Most punters will say the same. You only have to read the form which doesn't seem to concern the NSP too much.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 10:55 GMT)

One thing about Steve Smith - he's averaged better than Khawaja this season and he's the best player of spin in the squad after Clark. Players like David Hussey, Bailey and Ferguson haven't scored Shield runs this year. Shame really. Bailey looks like a good player with a fine temperament.

Posted by creekeetman on (March 6, 2013, 10:46 GMT)

@yorkshire-86.... spot on 100% on everything you said. watson should be at 6, and thats only if he is fit enough bowl, otherwise that should be henriques position. and any keeper but wade should be at 7. hughes is not test class, but unfortunately i dont see smith or khwaja being much better. when all their bowlers are fit oz have a good bowling attack, they just lack a quality spinner... the batting however is in a bad state at the moment.

Posted by jmcilhinney on (March 6, 2013, 10:44 GMT)

I at least applaud the Australian selectors for looking to make batting changes when England persisted with the same lineup all through the UAE tour and got the same result in each game. That said, it may not do them any good. I was under the impression that Watson was going home before the third Test but it appears not. I would say that Khawaja has to come in for Hughes. While the rest of the Aussie batsman look like they're at least a chance of a decent innings, Hughes just doesn't look like he has a clue. Maybe he'll have more chance on a Mohali pitch that's less spin-friendly than the previous two, but I have grave doubts.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 10:43 GMT)

why o why are they considering smith, i remember when he first started at ODI, people said he was picked becz he was young and gives the team energy.. :O :O.. ahhh, maybe they r picking him becz aus is lacking energy.. n maxwell got 4 wickets but comee onn, he isnt a no 7 test player. This is a joke takeing 4 fast ballers.. where is lyon.. dear o dear..

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 10:40 GMT)

Watson is holding the side back. He hasn't been bowling due to injury and his batting just isn't good enough. He's not lifting his average above the 30s, he never makes big totals, in fact he has only ever made two centuries. He's not the kind of player the Australian side needs right now, he's too typical of the kind of player that led to our previous Ashes defeats. If Hughes, who needs the experience, loses his place and Watson stays I will be seriously upset.

Posted by ozwriter on (March 6, 2013, 10:37 GMT)

i really can't understand mickey arthur. "Whether they both play, whether one plays, whether none..." etc. think about the message you are giving khawaja and smith. 'we think you are in the top 14 in the country for tests, and 4 of our top 6 are not performing but still we're not sure if we should choose you'. why do the bowlers get 'rotated' from test to test but not the batsman. why the infatuation with hughes and cowan, two of the least talented australian batsmen in the last 2 decades.

Posted by Nerk on (March 6, 2013, 10:32 GMT)

Australia have a benefit in that most of our batsmen and bowlers are young. Warner, Hughes, Khawaja, Lyon, Pattinson and Starc. They can learn from this and get better.

There have been problems with selections. In the last test we needed six specialist batsmen - we had 5. We needed 2 specialist spinners - we had 1. As much as I am a fan of Henriques and Maxwell, they are no Davidson and Benaud and are not good enough to play both of them in the same team...yet. Time for the selectors to go with a simple line up. The 6 best batsmen, Wade, the two best pacemen and the two best spinners. If they want an allrounder, Henriques would do a good job as the 2nd paceman. Come on lads! Show some fight in the next 2 tests!

Posted by munafmirza on (March 6, 2013, 10:17 GMT)

Australia made a huge mistake of not selecting George Bailey on this tour. He is a classical batsman who can play positively and is a better player of spin. He plays for CSK in the IPL and knows the Indian conditions. If Aus need to comeback in this series and poase a challenge in the Ashes.. then need to pick batsman who can score hundreds... From the looks of this team.. Michael clarke is doing what Tendulkar did in the 90's for India.. carrying the teams batting solo on his shoulders.

Posted by yorkshire-86 on (March 6, 2013, 10:13 GMT)

What is so good about Watson? An average in the mid thirties is not the mark of a Test top five batsman. And surely after the last series against England in England they should know that Hughes is not good enough to play international cricket, never was good enough to play international cricket, and never will be good enough to play international cricket. We have the same problem with a guy called Ravi Bopara, a dreadful batsman who the selectors keep bringing back every time a slot comes up.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 10:13 GMT)

Arthur doesn't know what he's talking about. On form Watson should have been left behind. Doolan, Cosgrove, Ferguson are just three who could have come. Our bright selectors picked five quicks to tour India and only one keeper (to ensure Wade can't be dropped). A spinner with a test average of 102. An allrounder in Maxwell who has poor form in the long game. And Arthur has the gall to say this is the best we've got? Talk about living in lala land.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 10:10 GMT)

Australia and India are pretty much sailing in the same boat..We always knew life was goin to be difficult after the exit of dravid and laxman..but the board paid lil but no attetion...ditto with with ponting and hussey out...they r struggling to put runs on the board...those thinking India outplayed aussies, i say lets wait for the south africa be honest i got high hopes from pujara..he looks to me a complete batsman..unlike kohli or gambhir..

ps..what happened to haddin? i thgt he was a good player of spin bowling..

Posted by player2942 on (March 6, 2013, 10:06 GMT)

I think the Australia lost both the test due to lack of picking up proper Team. Even after knowing that the Indian pitches are spin friendly they played only one full time spinner. Even I dont understand why they have dropped Lyon for the second test. They should play both Xavier n Lyon for the remainder of the series to be in contention for victory. Also they should play Moises ahead of maxwell and Usman Khawaja instead of Huges. Usman is a better player of spin compared to hughes as seen in the warmup matches. Moises comes handy with both pace bowling and the bating which he already proves in Chennai test. Steve smith , eventhough brings balance in spin bowling and also lower order bowling, he is inconsistent both with bat and ball. So I dont think he is still ready for a Test place. This would be my team:

David warner, Shane Watson, Ed Cowan, Usman Khawaja, Michael Clarke, Moises Henriques, Mathew Wade, Nathan Lyon, Xavier Doherty, James Pattison, Peter Siddle

Posted by Sanj747 on (March 6, 2013, 10:03 GMT)

Mickey let's review your comment on Davey Warner - "Davey Warner averaged 47 in our international Test series in Australia. It's a challenge for him playing outside". This guy has played IPL for a few seasons. He is used to these conditions just like Watson but is not good enough. And the second comment - ""I think they're realising some harsh lessons about playing in India. When I stood up at the start of the tour and said to them 'this is going to be the toughest cricket you've ever played', they looked and said 'yeah yeah right'. They're now realising it and they're like leeches for information. They're shocked at how hard it is." Again many of these guys have played in the IPL. How about we look at not paying them there match fees of $14,000 per test based on what happened in Hyderabad and then have a performance review of their million dollar contracts. Am sure we would all love a job where you still get paid and not have to perform.

Posted by cooberblob on (March 6, 2013, 9:58 GMT)

Smith! thats it! Why didnt we see that before, he has been hanging around the aussie team for the right time, now it is, he can open, bat in the middle order, wicket keep, spin, fields he's got everything, and the quintisential quality for any Australian cricketer hes gotta be from NSW. Problem solved. On a more serious note, why the hell did Lyon not play he would have spun it in the 2nd test, Maxwell and Doherty got wickets but by then I think the Indians were going for it, even Smith may have got lucky but then again not

Posted by ihaq1 on (March 6, 2013, 9:50 GMT)

breaking a big partnership is teh key...watson should open with maybes over everyone apart from clarke...usman khawaja seems tobe teh only spare batsman and u have to consider steve smith as a batsman...while batting is teh key it is getting india out that should be given thought...if u go in with fast bowlers than bowl first...theoretically a bit faster pitch would bring in pattinson and johnston and u can go with any spinners that u want...slot in usman khawaja at number three...watson to open and clarke at number four...bring in cowan at five for a rearguard action and six and seven wade and henriques/ maxell /steve smith and four bowlers two fast and two spin...

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 9:48 GMT)

I am rather surprised by Aussie approach to the series. They knew in advance that the pitches will spin friendly and India will field at least three spinners. Then why did not they use the services of Warne and others to get guidence on how to face the trio in Indian pitches. Again as you can plainly see, barring Clarke the rest are laden footed, afraid to use feet and thus cannon fodder for Indian spinners. So the solution lies not in changing the batters but having a positive approach. The pitch in Mohali too will be doctored to help spin and Aussies now must use all the video evidence of the three Indian spinners and try to fathom the various deliveries off the palm. Try using the feet to spinners and unsettle them. Instead of doing that the batters are helping the spin trio by being cemented behind the crease. Attack the spinners not blindly but wisely and put the problem in their court.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 9:46 GMT)

Cowan, Watson,Clarke, Khawaja, Smith,Wade, Henriques, Siddle, Johnson, Pattinson,Lyon. I think this should work for australia.

Johnson will definately play a huge part in australia's success...

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 9:46 GMT)

Dhoni always scores runs with tail-end partners not with top batsman. this is also one of leader skill. Clarke should learn from Dhoni bhai....

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 9:40 GMT)

Australia's main problem is the lack of a balanced attack in their domestic cricket. Too much reliance on fast bowling and focus on speed rather than guile. Why there is no encouragement for spin bowlers in your domestic cricket? Even medium fast swing bowlers are a rarity in Australian Cricket. The likes of Ernie Toshack, Max Walker, Dymock, Massie are missing in Aussie Cricket. Fast bowling like the likes of Lindwall, Miller, Lille & Thomson can wreck most test teams on Australian pitches but on the sub-continental pitches if you do not have guile, you will be a looser. Occasionally you do produce all time great spin bowlers like Shane Warne, Grimmett, O'Reilly but they are more of an accidental happening rather than a systematic development in your domestic cricket. Make spin friendly wickets in Australia and you would find batsmen playing spin as well as test class spin bowlers. Your Cricket kills spin bowlers with one dimensional fast bowling attack with every state teams.

Posted by mixters on (March 6, 2013, 9:39 GMT)

I hope the Aussie Media who virtually ran Ponting out of the team and may have influenced Husseys early quit of test cricket are happy. They tried with Hussey when England toured last and were shot down, then again with ponting last time India were in Aus and failed. Now both are gone and the batting is a shambles. I looked at the shield run table guess who is on top of that. Thats right Ponting the third best of all time on the offical rankings, how we wish you were here Ricky

Posted by BRUTALANALYST on (March 6, 2013, 9:38 GMT)

Khawaja deserves a shot, form what I've seen he's a very classy batsman that plays with a straight blade ! which is the most important thing in India (playing straight) hope he goes well.

Posted by vikneshk on (March 6, 2013, 9:27 GMT)

Watson, Cowan,Clarke, Khawaja, Smith,Wade,Maxwell,Henriques, Johnson, Pattinson,Lyon. This team will definitely test India. As an Indian Fan, I dont want this team to play against us.

Posted by PointFielder on (March 6, 2013, 9:25 GMT)

Australian selectors are panicking. They are keen to add another T20/ODI player in the test match playing 11.

Posted by eyballfallenout on (March 6, 2013, 9:22 GMT)

im so over australias selection policy..... If smith bowls against the indians he will be smashed to all parts of the ground

Posted by manoj.aspen on (March 6, 2013, 9:21 GMT)

Australian think tank has made some big blunder on this tour so far. First they did when they asked Mitchel Starc to bowl the Round wicket in First Test whereas his strength is Swing, when he started bowling Round the he lost his Swing and didn't get revers swing going either. Then They dropped him. 2nd mistake they did was to drop LYON. And lastly they messed up with their batting order. All these mistakes together made the difference. For me Australian needs to reshuffle their batting order and play on their strength that is fast bowling.

To me Best Australian eleven for the remaining Test is:

1. David Warner 2. Shane Watson 3. Ed Cowan 4. Michael Clark. 5. Usman Khawaja 6. Mathew Wade 7. Glenn Maxwell /Moises Henriques 8. James Pattinson 9. Mitechell Johnson/ Mitchell Starc 10. Peter Siddle 11. Nathan Lyon

Australia should play to their strength i.e fast bowling and don't fall pray of playing 2-3 spinners as their spinners are not good enough and play positive cricket as they

Posted by Webba84 on (March 6, 2013, 9:18 GMT)

Who on earth would Smith come in for? Maxwell? At least Maxwell took 4 wickets and now has a games worth of experience in Indian conditions. If you are going to choose non test players in your test team before they are ready you may as well keep choosing the same one for all the difference it makes. Or you could inhibit both Maxwell and Smiths development further by manically picking and dropping them until all semblance of stability and self confidence is ruined permanently. Its becoming very clear who should not be on the selection panel at this point.

Posted by Aussiesfalling on (March 6, 2013, 9:12 GMT)

The prospect of Clarke being exposed to the new ball in England fills me with delight. Australia made a mistake though not batting him at 3 in this series.

Posted by on (March 6, 2013, 9:03 GMT)

I think too much is being made out of these losses. The lesson to learn is of patience. england did well becuase Cook and company did nto try to bat India out of the test in one or two sessions alone. They batted calmly and were fine with a slowers than normal scoring rate. Aussie batsmen give an impression that they are under pressure if the rate is below 4, and they even start to panic if it goes around 3 or less. If they get their composure right they can surely put up a brave fight. Even if they do that, it will augur pretty well for their future.

Posted by vrn59 on (March 6, 2013, 9:01 GMT)

My AUS XI for the next two Tests: Ed Cowan, David Warner, Shane Watson, Michael Clarke (C), Usman Khawaja, Matthew Wade (wk), Moises Henriques, Mitchell Johnson, James Pattinson, Peter Siddle, Nathan Lyon.

Posted by leonidov on (March 6, 2013, 9:00 GMT)

Watson really has to start to deliver. He's always been immensely talented, but his brace of 90s and injuries always seem to suggest a very fragile psychological infrastructure. Fortunately he is abetted by the mediocrity of current batsmen in the country in maintaining his position, however he will have to begin bowling again. I agree with a previous comment that Warner should be VC. Can't see Doolan or especially Ferguson 'commanding' selection, unless it's a Quiney-protects-Hughes scenario. Hughes is the best-performed young batsman in the country by a very large margin, however I've long thought his problems pyschological. His future has probably dimmed again, which is unfortunate. I do wonder how long Wade can continue to go beneath the radar. His keeping beginning in the ODI series in England was particularly ordinary, and his keeping against Lyon at home was far worse. Time for Haddin to resume national honours while Nevill regains the gloves in NSW.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 8:59 GMT)

I'm not an expert but whatever I have seen of Steve Smith he is not a Test Class by any means. Incredibly hard to think why Australia can't produce young batsmen who can step into Test Cricket with ease as it used to happen. I'm an Indian fan but have always admired the way Aussies play the game and they will always remain my fav team after India but the recent selections are so unlike Aussie teams of the past. Selecting Steve Smith/ Xavier Doherthy has absolutely perplexed me, surely some of the young batsmen in Australia can't do any worse then Steve Smith. This was also an opportunity missed by the selectors which of the players have the heart to play for their country. Joe Root is a classic example, don't believe he has a phenomenal first class record but look what he doing at the highest level. Surely Australia has few such players and if they can't be groomed now I'm not sure when. Hopefully the selectors wake up and make some sweeping changes which are long overdue.

Posted by Mr.Cr1cket on (March 6, 2013, 8:57 GMT)

My team for the next Test is:

Warner, Watson, Cowan, Clarke, Smith, Wade, Henriques, Maxwell, Johnson, Pattinson, Doherty.

Smith is a better player of spin than Khawaja and I feel that Watson has to open if he is not bowling. I rate Lyon higher than Doherty as a spinner but picking Lyon then Doherty then Lyon would leave them with no confidence. Siddle didn't look threatening in the last Test so I would replace him with Johnson.

Posted by nzcricket174 on (March 6, 2013, 8:53 GMT)

Best group available? I can think of three guys in particular with astonishingly better records - Ricky Ponting, Chris Rogers and David Hussey. Might as well throw Katich into that lot too. Four terrific players whom were mistreated poorly by Cricket Australia. You may not know these guys exist as CA have done a great job at making their presence unknown.

Posted by dakshinap on (March 6, 2013, 8:24 GMT)

Hello Mr. Mickey, you may considred Khawaja, Smith, Johnson, Lyon, Starc,Haddin, S.Marsh, or even Langer,Symonds,B Hogg, Barcken,David Boon, Mark Taylor, Paul Reffiel, Micheal Slater, Healy, C Mcdermott but 0 - 4 is inevitable to you and your team in this series. Just wait & see

Posted by MrKricket on (March 6, 2013, 8:24 GMT)

We could fill a line up with over 35 batsmen like Rogers, Katich, D. Hussey etc but it wouldn't be a great leap forward for the future. Hughes, sadly has no future. I hope Khawaja finally scores some runs as he's had a few chances and not done much. Watson must be on his last legs and I'm not sure about Cowan yet however he showed a bit of patience in his last innings and that's what is needed. It's Test cricket after all.

Does Hauritz still play?

Posted by palla.avinash on (March 6, 2013, 8:23 GMT)

Australia best line up go with this u can have chance of winning 1.warner2.cowan3.clarke4.khawaja 5steven smith 6.wade 7 henriques 8 nathan lyon 9 pattinson 10 siddle 11 dohetry/johnson/starc if mohali pitch has something for pacers drop dohetry and pick one best left arm seamer johson for experience wise or if he isn't really at best go with starc if it is turner better go with dohetry.Watson is out of my mind he isn't concentrating as previous ,phil hughes with his technique in India he cant be in 11.steven smith needs bowl in net as much as he bats in nets so than even he fails with bat he can wickets with ball as jedeja is doing for country.If warner isn't really fit then play watson as opener.i doubt his fitness sometimes bearing pain can lead to lack of concentration so play warner if he doesn't have any pain.The above team is best chance for australia in mohali i can bet it.India dropped many catches so practice scoreing runs through slips.

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (March 6, 2013, 8:19 GMT)

Smith.... LOL !!!! Smacks of pure desperation and panic.

Posted by Ozcricketwriter on (March 6, 2013, 8:17 GMT)

The series is lost so why not give the youngsters a try? My XI: Warner, Khawaja, Clarke, Smith, Henriques, Maxwell, Wade, Pattinson, Johnson, Doherty, Lyon. It might not be a particularly good side but neither was the side that lost by an innings. Why not give it a shot and see how they go?

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 8:17 GMT)

bring in Mitchell Johnson ,usman & smith .Australia team will be so balance . Mitchell Johnson is a match winner

Posted by Syed_imran_abbas on (March 6, 2013, 8:12 GMT)

you will give always Khawaja a chance in tough conditions than keep him out for long.. Test should be played on considerable neutral pitch conditions, where every team should have chance.

Posted by Mitty2 on (March 6, 2013, 8:12 GMT)

These 'supporters' are so easy to dismiss this team at any possible chance. We have now lost five tests since the ashes whilst England have lost seven, and weve played two more tests than them. Pretty good rebuilding if you ask me. But hussey's retirement undoubtedly put a spanner in the works. With us being the best performed team against SA by a long long shot, and with the form of hussey and Clarke, and with the undoubted plethora of quality fast bowlers, the ashes were looking much easier. But now, without hussey, the batsmen have batted uncertainly and without confidence, knowing that without Huss there will be no lower order fightback.. They need to step up.

On arthur's point of view, smith is not even near the best 10 batsmen in the country, even Neville has a better average than him. The likes of burns and doolan are both above Watson and smith. Watson is an opener or nothing, and considering as the Cowan and Warner opening partnership is the worlds best, Watson has to go.

Posted by Meety on (March 6, 2013, 8:12 GMT)

@Edwards_Anderson on (March 6, 2013, 7:48 GMT) - it could be beneficial to Khawaja (career-wise), not to play in this Test series! == == == Watson should have the vice captaincy removed. I would give it to ANYBODY but him. Watto's biggest problem is between the ears, he has too much static going on up there & the vice captaincy is too-much pressure for him. The 80 against SL was about the only score I can think of that he has made since getting the vice captaincy. I'd give the captaincy to either Siddle or Warner.

Posted by hycIass on (March 6, 2013, 8:12 GMT)

No need to panic, we just need to realise that the selectors are making mistakes to go with the fact that our players are not performing to their best .Not picking 6 batsmen is the real sin of the selectors. We can't bat as it is so rubbing the teams of one more chance to score them really hurts. The allrounder thing is also hurting the team. If they can't bat and bowl at test level then don't pick them which is why i wouldn't go for Smith as his bowling will get creamed by the Indians. Khawaja should be slotted at 3 as he can hold a innings and provide Clarke support. And we need to play more tour matches in between matches.You cannot learn how to play spin in the nets. You need real match experience on real pitches. Phillip Hughes ain't going to improve his ability to play spin when the 'spinners' bowling to him are in the nets.The idea of improving your game in the nets is a fallacy. I also hope I also hope we have a few net bowlers as our batsman would get used to Doherty and Lyon.

Posted by bajwa_rulez on (March 6, 2013, 8:09 GMT)

its not the batting its the wicket and no drs,,, wickets look like clay ,, u can only play french open tennis on them ,, its true that everyone take advantage of home conditions but not like this ,, if u go in australia and they leave grass on all the wicket india wont even make 100 in inning

Posted by Edwards_Anderson on (March 6, 2013, 8:05 GMT)

@KrishnaVerma i am a fan of Marsh and Haurtiz too. I would have picked Hauritz as one of our spinners on this tour and as for Marsh he has a serious hamstring injury which will keep him out for a few months. @SalazaraiZalmai yes Khawaja will be a good replacement and was endorsed by Hussey as the guy to take his spot so time to give him a crack.And we need to stop blaming the pitches. I suggest folks critising go to India and actually look at the dirt in that country and you might understand why their pitches don't look like the Gabba or Lords.

Posted by Dashgar on (March 6, 2013, 8:04 GMT)

Something is seriously wrong when Smith not only might get selected, but given the squad, should get selected. Bailey looked unlucky at the start of the tour, not bringing him is seeming like lunacy now. Also Callum Ferguson and Adam Voges would be handy I think.

Posted by reddawn1975 on (March 6, 2013, 8:04 GMT)

My god lets play Steve Smith a guy who should not even be in India let alone in the squad get S O'KEEFE over there my side would be ,,, 1. S. Watson, 2.D.Warner, 3.S.Marsh ,4.M.Clarke(C) 5.M.Marsh, 6.B.Haddin ,7. S.O'Okeefe , 8. M .Johnson ,9. A.Agar, 10. M.Starc , 11. J.Patterson 12th man N. coulter-nile i think that is a strong side

Posted by Paul_Rampley on (March 6, 2013, 8:03 GMT)

Patience is needed…and better coaching….Lehmann would be a good coach in the future. This is the most inexperienced side we've sent to India in 3 decades. And almost every young cricketer struggles in India at this level. This is a great learning experience for these 'kid'. Dont be deceived.There's some very talented players in our team. Its just that they are young, raw, still have flaws to address and most importantly, they need the experience they are now having. They will come away better players from this experience.Its why Khawaja must be given a chance too because he also needs to know what really good spin bowling on spin friendly tracks is like because Australian pitches are no longer favouring spin bowlers, so success as a spin bowler now is rare and our batsmen are therefore not getting the experience at home. I am confident both Hughes and Khawaja can be long term test stars for us. Take these kids to Britain. They will put up a good fight and be better for the experience.

Posted by sshailesh on (March 6, 2013, 7:51 GMT)

Ausies should go with this line up - 1.Cowan 2. Warner 3. Watson 4. Clarke 5. Khwaja 6. Wade 7. Smith 8. Hendreqe 9. Siddle 10. Pattinson 11. Lyon

Posted by Edwards_Anderson on (March 6, 2013, 7:51 GMT)

@KrishnaVerma i am a fan of Marsh and Haurtiz too. I would have picked Hauritz as one of our spinners on this tour and as for Marsh he has a serious hamstring injury which will keep him out for a few months. @SalazaraiZalmai yes Khawaja will be a good replacement and was endorsed by Hussey as the guy to take his spot so time to give him a crack.And also we need to stop blaming the pitches. I suggest folks critising go to India and actually look at the dirt in that country and you might understand why their pitches don't look like the Gabba or Lords.

Posted by Edwards_Anderson on (March 6, 2013, 7:48 GMT)

We are now poor losers because we've spent the last 20 years being the world's worst winners. From the 90s through to the mid 2000s we have dominated sport like never before. Unbeatable swim teams, athletics gold medals, World Cup round of 16, F1 winners, tennis champions, Steven Bradbury and Steve Waughs Invincibles. Sport used to be the Australian birthright, losing gracefully our national myth. Now winning at sport has become the birthright and we've turned into a nation of poor winners.Lets just accept that a better India side beat us in the first 2 tests but that doesn't mean we can't come back. Our top order has serious issues and Khawaja would be a very good addition to that, no he wouldn't be the saviour we are looking for but with a few games under his belt he has the potential to become a very good test player so lets give him a chance. Smith as a batsman can never get a node ahead of Khawaja and his bowling has been non existent in shield this season.

Posted by Sprojy on (March 6, 2013, 7:44 GMT)

That sounds a lot like a coach passing the buck. If the players are not listening to you, there is obviously a problem of respect. Given he is talking about young men being young men it seems, he is basically singling out Hughes and Maxwell. Interesting how they both would view those comments.

'Ed Cowan has continually done enough?' Are we watching the same player? And while we are on player selections, could one of you selectors PLEASE explain SOK's ommitance?

Posted by jr1972 on (March 6, 2013, 7:41 GMT)

Smith to be considered! Australia really are in trouble.

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 7:39 GMT)

Where is Shaun Marsh and Hauritz..Aussies should respect the player having spin strength..Marsh is always a best choice at number3 in subcontinental.. Hauritz is better than Doherty though..should have polished S. Smith who can score 60-70s @number7 and took 2 wkts in an inning..

Posted by Fleming_Mitch on (March 6, 2013, 7:38 GMT)

Yes, we've been comprehensively out-played by India. And yes, we're all right to be pretty angry by Australia's sub-standard performances. However, the last thing we need before the Ashes is a spree of vast, whole-sale changes. I'd argue for some changes, but not a team overhaul. Watson should open with Khawaja coming into the middle order. Khawaja is a ready made test batsman, one of our better players of swing bowling but he has also improved alot against spin under Lehman's guidance and uses his feet and sweeps naturally. Smith's bowling can't be taken into consideration as he has hardly bowled any overs in shield this season so Khawaja is a clear front runner for me. I think the bowling unit should consist of Starc, Pattinson and Johnson. The argument for four quicks is a valid one and I'm not opposed to it. But I think for team balance we should have Lyon back in the side. If we go with four quicks, Mitchell Starc comes in andt his all-rounder obsession has to end.

Posted by Mary_786 on (March 6, 2013, 7:33 GMT)

Hughes has to go for this tour. He was found out in England 2009. He was found out by NZ (!) in 2010. He was found out by India in 2013. He struggles against: the seaming ball, the swinging ball, the short ball, the leg side ball and now the spinning ball. In short he struggles against international quality bowling. Even if you pick him he is in no way a number 4. In England that would be waiting until the shine is off the ball and send him in to face Swan and Panesar. That is a disaster.Khawaja has to come in and get a real go at the spot, not just 1-2 games as has happened in the past. He would be our best number 3. Clarke is not a number three but a four for us. You are weakening one area (and possibly our only strong one) to strengthen another. He will be in within the first 10 overs more likely than not. Therefore his failure rate will be higher especially as he is vulnerable to the swinging ball early in his innings. and there is no Clarke at number 4 or 5 to repair the innings.

Posted by Bongz77 on (March 6, 2013, 7:32 GMT)

If that is the best Aus have to offer then we in for a sad, sad next few years for the Aussies. I personally think that is the worst Australian batting line up since the 80's

Posted by   on (March 6, 2013, 7:32 GMT)

Khawaja might fill for Mike Hussey if given few games.

Posted by warneneverchuck on (March 6, 2013, 7:31 GMT)

Huges' batting in this series remind me of ponting's in 2001 series

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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.
Tour Results
India v Australia at Delhi - Mar 22-24, 2013
India won by 6 wickets
India v Australia at Mohali - Mar 14-18, 2013
India won by 6 wickets
India v Australia at Hyderabad (Deccan) - Mar 2-5, 2013
India won by an innings and 135 runs
India v Australia at Chennai - Feb 22-26, 2013
India won by 8 wickets
India A v Australians at Chennai - Feb 16-18, 2013
Match drawn
More results »
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News | Features Last 3 days