Australia in South Africa 2011-12 September 28, 2011

Mitchell Marsh in line for T20 debut


Mitchell Marsh, Matthew Wade and Patrick Cummins are all in line to make their international debuts after being named in Australia's squad to tour South Africa next month. Australia's selectors have chosen separate 14-man groups for the Twenty20s and ODIs in South Africa, with Mitchell Johnson axed from the Twenty20 outfit and David Hussey cut from the one-day side.

Cricket Australia are still in the process of choosing their new selectors, so the squads were picked by an interim panel led by the outgoing chairman Andrew Hilditch, along with Greg Chappell, Jamie Cox and the stand-in coach Troy Cooley. The captains were also part of the panel - Michael Clarke for the ODI squad and Cameron White for the T20 group.

A serious shoulder injury that ruled the allrounder John Hastings out of the trip opened the door for Marsh, 19, who is set to follow his older brother Shaun and father Geoff in representing Australia after being picked in the Twenty20 squad. A promising allrounder who played for Australia A on the recent tour of Zimbabwe, Marsh had been earmarked for higher honours since captaining Australia to the Under-19 World Cup title in 2010.

He's not the only teenager in the touring party, with Cummins, 18, having made both the T20 and ODI groups. A fast bowler who was the bolter in Cricket Australia's contract list this year, Cummins would be Australia's youngest ODI debutant if he plays in the series, beating his New South Wales team-mate Josh Hazlewood, who played at 19 last year.

It has been a remarkably quick rise for Cummins, who has played only two one-day matches for his state and has not yet taken a wicket in the format. His inclusion in the ODI squad means he will miss the first two rounds of the Sheffield Shield season.

The retirement of Brad Haddin from Twenty20 internationals, combined with Tim Paine's finger injury, meant Wade was the logical wicketkeeping choice for the shortest format. Wade, 23, has been third in line behind Haddin and Paine since playing for Australia A last year, and he confirmed his credentials with a standout summer in the Ryobi Cup.

But the news wasn't so good for two of the older members of the side. David Hussey, 34, lost his ODI place despite being part of the World Cup squad earlier this year and winning a CA contract, while the selectors preferred Doug Bollinger to Johnson in the Twenty20 side.

"Mitchell [Johnson] has struggled in this format of the game to date," Hilditch said. "Most Twenty20 internationals have been at the start of tours and Mitchell has not always been at his best in these matches. Obviously Mitchell has a great skill set for Twenty20 cricket and we are sure he will put a lot of pressure on us to pick him in the future in the Twenty20 team.

"We consider we have picked an extremely strong Twenty20 squad, which has a good balance of experience and exciting young talent. There is flexibility in the squad to deal with conditions in South Africa as we continue to prepare for the ICC World Twenty20, which is only a year away."

A key man in the T20 squad is David Warner, who has also been given a chance to resume his career in the 50-over format, having not played an ODI in more than two years. Hilditch described Warner's recent form as "irresistible", including three centuries in first-class and one-day cricket on the recent Australia A trip to Zimbabwe.

The inclusion of Warner comes after Haddin, who opened with Shane Watson during the World Cup, moved down the order during the recent ODIs in Sri Lanka. That could mean a battle between Warner and Shaun Marsh to become the next long-term opening partner for Watson in the one-day international side.

Australia play two Twenty20 internationals, in Cape Town on October 13 and in Johannesburg on October 16, before the series of three ODIs in Centurion, Port Elizabeth and Durban. The squad for the two Tests, in Cape Town and Johannesburg in early November, will be announced in the coming weeks.

ODI squad Shane Watson, David Warner, Shaun Marsh, Ricky Ponting, Michael Clarke (capt), Michael Hussey, Brad Haddin (wk), Steven Smith, Mitchell Johnson, Brett Lee, Xavier Doherty, James Pattinson, Patrick Cummins, Doug Bollinger.

Twenty20 squad Shane Watson, David Warner, Shaun Marsh, Aaron Finch, David Hussey, Cameron White (capt), Matthew Wade (wk), Mitchell Marsh, Steven Smith, Steve O'Keefe, Brett Lee, James Pattinson, Patrick Cummins, Doug Bollinger.

Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Solly on September 30, 2011, 10:20 GMT

    I would like to see an Eleven from Australia for T20 that looks like this. I only wish. I don't know if this will ever happen. But this to me is the most explosive batsmen in Australia for the future. I choose to have Michael Klinger as captain because, he has some great success in this form of the game. Don't get me wrong, I think he's a brilliant tactician. I have chosen to push him down the order, just in case of a collapse.

    My XI Matthew Wade (WK) Philip Hughes Daniel Harris (Spinner) Aiden Blizzard David Warner Shane Watson Michael Klinger (Capt) Moises Henriques or Brett Lee Daniel Christian or Dirk Nannes Steve O'Keefe Doug Bollinger

    Bench: Brett Lee Dirk Nannes Chris Borgas Tom Cooper Nathan Lyon

  • Christopher on September 29, 2011, 7:48 GMT

    @RightArmEverything...Why would I emphasise the second part of a statement from an Argus Review that I took the time to read at length.This article is all about an occurence of selection on potential and my reply reflects a common sentiment.Its a rebuttal,implying an opposing view and evidence to support that view.Selections over the last 4 years have been replete with players chosen on potential,to what success?Simply using the term,'potential'doesnt make it true.Simply choosing on youth,doesnt prove potential.Anyone could do that.Selection is supposed to be professional.The vast current of comment from Argus and the viewing public indicates that it hasnt been so.There must be a reasonable sample of evidence to support any gamble,intuitive or otherwise.To approach it in any other fashion,is frivolous, unprofessional and discriminatory towards those who do have a supporting record.

  • rod on September 29, 2011, 2:01 GMT

    It is an absolute farce that Hilditch has anything to do with selecting. Callum Ferguson should also be a definite inclusion for one day squad, even test squad... still frustrating, I guess the Argus review wasn't clear enough...and Watson shouldn't be playing T20, make a few more test hundreds first consistently, then play around with T20, and no matter where Aus are in the rankings currently, a 2 test series between SA and Aus is just not cricket

  • Matthew on September 29, 2011, 0:59 GMT

    @hyclass, it's true Argus does emphasise selection based on performance "It is critical that superior performance is rewarded at all levels..." but this is followed directly by "At the same time, potential cannot be overlooked: there must be room for some intuition in selections". If you're going to bang on about the first part in every post I don't think you should omit the second part. Argus is about greater accountability by players and selectors, and selections backed up by performance, but he clearly believes there are cases where it is justified to select players based on potential. I do agree with quite a few people's opinions about the squads but I think once Hilditch is completely out of the picture we'll see better selections.

  • Firdaus on September 28, 2011, 14:22 GMT

    @tdobbo: Both Hussey sisters?

  • Dummy4 on September 28, 2011, 14:10 GMT

    Its commendable that CA and CSA have decided to organize a series in the FTP Window available.However though this is a "compensation" series would have preferred 3 tests to 2 tests.2 t20 games and 3 odis seem fine but 2 tests?Last time in India Australia opted for a 2 test series and hosted Sri Lanka for 3 odis.

  • Terry on September 28, 2011, 13:00 GMT

    "Twenty20 squad Shane Watson" Its good to see that the selectors have prioritised test cricket by removing all test players from the T20I side. However, cricket australia you missed one. Unless you have a surprise up your sleeve, Shane Watson is still a test player. I think its about time that you allowed the test team's players to focus on Test & ODI matches. The skill set difference between test and T20I's is huge. Watson has lost form recently whereas other test players are starting to perform ... anyone want to take a stab at why that is?

  • Dummy4 on September 28, 2011, 10:37 GMT

    I really think cricket fans are missing a point here.Not many comments about SA and Aus playing only 2 test matches(by Aus/SA readers)...BCCI is often blasted for making T20 their primary interest (and rightly so) BUT what is worrying is that even the non sub continental boards seem to think alike and worse they get away with that..especially for a country like Aus which has great following for test cricket this is quite worrying...CA should be blamed not only for mismanagement/wrong policies which led to Ashes debacle but also for setting up a 2 test match away series with the No:2 test nation in the world.CA did this previously (2 test match tour to India)just before Ashes and it definitely contributed to their 'ashes' soon after..any takers.....

  • Daniel on September 28, 2011, 10:24 GMT

    Dont understand the selection of Cummins - sure he is a promising youngster, but how is he ever going to reach his potential if he never plays first class cricket?? The guy should be playing for his state side for a few more years instead of missing matches going on a tour he may not play on.

    Secondly, Mike HUssey has average 57+ in his last 9 innings in T20, he is currently the best batsmen in this form of the game, worldwide. He is exactly the sort of guy who should be in the squad, to show the youngsters what it takes to succeed in every form of the game

  • Tim on September 28, 2011, 10:23 GMT

    I definitely wouldn't give up on Cameron White just yet. He made a quickfire 39 in his last game when nobody did anything apart from Watson. He's a good skipper and is the most destructive batsman in the country at his best. Less than a year ago he really should have been in the Test squad after a hundred for Aus A vs England.

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