Australia in South Africa 2013-14 February 25, 2014

Rogers survives once more

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Three times, in three series, on three continents, Chris Rogers has walked out to bat thinking it might be the last time he played for Australia. On each occasion, he has played with the freedom that can otherwise elude him, exhibiting the fine balance of functional and fluent cricket that epitomises his best work, and walked off with a score to ensure it would not be the last time.

An admirable century in Port Elizabeth arrived with Shane Watson looming as an inclusion for Cape Town. Beyond this series, Cricket Australia's list of central contracts will be named. Rogers' place for now and the next 12 months hinged on an innings played in vexing and unfamiliar conditions against the world's best attack. At 36, having begun his Test career well after he had given up hope of having one, Rogers is only ever two or three innings away from the edge. When he can actually see the precipice, it seems to help.

"I'm not stupid. I knew full well that I was under pressure," Rogers said. "You can't perform the way I had for Australia, particularly when we're doing well. Because there's other guys who want to get into the side. I knew I was under pressure and that Shane was a good chance to play in the last game. In some respects I stopped worrying. I thought 'whatever happens, happens'. And I think if anything I'd been worrying about it too much. It was almost a bit of relief to just go out there, not worry about it and just play the situation of the game.

"This was always going to be a big tour for the side and for me personally. I've been trying hard. I probably hit more balls in the nets [before a game] than I ever have. Maybe I've been trying too hard, and that's one of the traps you can get into. Not doing the simple things that you've always done. So I probably just thought it's time to stop worrying and just play, and maybe that helped a little bit in this innings."

But there must be a less stressful way of batting your best than waiting until the last possible moment to produce it?

"I guess I'm probably one of the players who performs a bit better when there's extra pressure for some reason and it's helped," he said. "But it's not a healthy thing, it's quite stressful and it'd be nice if I could be a little more consistent and take the pressure off. But that's the way it goes. It's been a tough journey facing good attacks every Test match. There's always going to be a lot of pressure and the bowlers are making it difficult, so I just have to try to get better."

The first time Rogers thought it might be his last Test match was at Old Trafford, following a horrid match at Lord's when he missed a village green full toss from Graeme Swann in the first innings and was bowled shouldering arms to him in the second. Wracked by irritation and shame about performing so badly on the ground home ground of his county Middlesex, Rogers wanted the world to know before he disappeared that he could actually play. A sparkling 84 was the result.

A similar scenario raised its head in the second and third Tests during the home Ashes. Rogers cobbled 72 in Adelaide though not striking the ball well, but found his rhythm in Perth after lengthy batting sessions with his former state teammate Justin Langer. A first innings run out at the WACA Ground provided a hiccup, but another half-century in the second innings shored up his place in the Ashes-winning team, and he shone with hundreds over the holiday swing through Melbourne and Sydney.

That brought Rogers to South Africa, where he again wrestled with his technique and mentality. No-one was more put out by the loss of the tour match in Potchefstroom to rain, particularly when he edged a well-pitched ball from Ryan Harris a few minutes into intra-squad practice at the Wanderers. "If you're out, you're out" had been the coach Darren Lehmann's instruction, so Rogers went, and walked out to bat at Centurion not entirely sure he was ready.

Three slim scores later and he was left to make runs against Dale Steyn, Morne Morkel and Vernon Philander on a Port Elizabeth pitch keeping low and aiding reverse swing. It was the kind of challenge to extract the best from Rogers' game, which is all subtle adjustments and calculations about his best means of survival. Unlike a few of his teammates he does not decide on his stroke until late, a canny method against the moving ball.

"You have to read the situation, and play to your limitations as well," he said. "Once it starts reversing, committing to big drives is probably out of the question. It almost becomes like French cricket, just trying to defend as hard as you can. In some respects it might have helped my innings.

"I can't hit the ball as well as Davey and a lot of the other guys can, so there's other things I have to do better. Probably using my head and working out how my innings needs to be played, they're probably some of the things I've learned and can use now."

Initially, Rogers and David Warner prospered, to the extent that a distant fourth innings target looked briefly attainable. Michael Clarke may have declared in the aftermath that it would only have seemed so to "people who don't know the game", but for a few overs Rogers was also a believer.

"You can get flat wickets like that in Adelaide, or certainly when the best time to bat is against the new ball," he said. "It's good to be positive then and you don't often say that as an opener, so you try to make the most of your opportunities.

"We had an unbelievable start and Davey was batting was so well, and I thought his lbw was probably clipping and if he didn't get out there we still had a real good chance to win. That was why I went for that challenge but it was amazing how it changed.

"It was funny. When we were flying and the ball was doing not much I thought 'You know, this is not completely out of reach here'. I thought it was going to be a big challenge, and a couple of wickets always changes the complexion of the game, but I though we were half a chance. And then it started just doing plenty. Then it was a completely different game."

"Once it starts reversing, committing to big drives is probably out of the question. It almost becomes like French cricket, just trying to defend as hard as you can."
Chris Rogers on dealing with reverse swing

The second act of Rogers' innings followed Warner's dismissal, as Alex Doolan, Shaun Marsh, Michael Clarke, Steve Smith and Brad Haddin all perished to the reversing ball. Their exits dictated the course of the match, leaving Rogers bailing water furiously from Australia's sinking ship. "What was really disappointing is going from thinking there was a small sniff of winning to, in the space of half an hour or whatever it was, just hanging on for dear life," he said. "That was exceptionally disappointing. All credit to them, they bowled so well, but that was tough to take."

Tougher still was the closing drama, as Rogers held out with the tail in hope that forecast rain on the final day might be enough to scrounge a draw. Graeme Smith had also seen the weather maps, creating a drama out of an otherwise foregone conclusion. Amid some dispute from Australia, he claimed an extra 30 minutes' play to seek a result, while fading light came into calculations also. Rogers was to be run out trying to get Peter Siddle off strike, and explained his own rearguard thinking.

"I knew the light was becoming an issue so I knew that Steyn and Morkel couldn't bowl but I thought Philander would still be allowed to bowl and therefore he was the challenge," Rogers said. "I thought if I could get down to the other end there were two overs from Philander to go and I was happy for Sidds to face the part time spin the other way.

"To be honest I thought [sub-fielder Alviro] Petersen had been asleep for a bit of the day but he picked it up all of a sudden threw it sidearm and threw the stumps down, I didn't expect that."

It didn't matter in the end. The game-within-a-game on the penultimate day lost its meaning when the scheduled fifth morning brought overcast skies but no apocalyptic thunderstorms. South Africa had plenty of time to scoop those last two wickets had they needed it. Rogers, though, can take solace from an innings that drew the praise of not only Clarke but also Steyn and Smith, who each ran to shake his hand as he walked off the ground. His place is safe once more.

Daniel Brettig is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • POSTED BY Dave1970 on | February 25, 2014, 22:54 GMT

    Over the past ten tests Rogers has been one of Aussies best performing batsmen. It seems that, unless you have had an already long career, the knives are being sharpened when you fail a few times. Not every innings will be a big innings. Rogers is safe.

    Aussie issue is the middle order, and while Marsh scored a century on his return, it is his inability to string consistent sores.

    Doolan is a little different, it is his first taste and needs time to settle in. No doubt he has the technique and the temperament, just lacks the confidence and stability of playing in the team for an extended time. Chopping and changing does not do any side any good at any time.

    As much as I think Watson has been given too much time for the return he has produced, his last ten tests have been good. If he does come back in then, IMO, Marsh out and Watson at six, Clarke to 4, smith to 5.

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 18:12 GMT

    I love the way Chris Rogers bat. Very simple and uncomplicated technique, very neat player. I wish he had been drafted into the Australian team when he was 20. He literally plays the ball under his nose, and is able to find gaps as well as play strokes all around the ground without any flashy strokeplay. To me personally, other than Michael Clarke he is the best batsman to watch in the Australian team.

  • POSTED BY mondotv on | March 2, 2014, 6:25 GMT

    And who would he have replaced @ 20? Matthew Hayden or Justin Langer? He's not as good as either of them. I also don't agree on technique - its Ok but he shuffles across a bit like Katich and on wickets that seam a bit is more susceptible to LBW a he's always back. He also looks particularly vunerable to spin, falling to Swann numerous times after getting a start. There just doesn't seem a lot of future to me in picking a 36 year old - he's a stop gap at best.

  • POSTED BY cricketsubh on | February 28, 2014, 5:41 GMT

    i donot think why people put pressure on rogers to score runs in every test match to ciment his spot he score 4 tons in just 13 test and 2 tons he made in oversees conditions as a opner he avs 40 what can he do more as a test opner in australia,south africe and england pitches are not flat like india,srilanka,they are gud for fast bowling and as a opner in these pitches ,makeing runs is not a easy job so stop talking about rogers when he fails to score runs .

  • POSTED BY ThinkingCricket on | February 28, 2014, 4:56 GMT

    "I wish he had been drafted into the Australian team when he was 20."

    Oh the irony! That kind of thinking is precisely why he is under pressure and why players like Katich and Hodge were kicked out irrespective of performance. Any team would be served by looking only at performance and not age, whether the player is 16 years old or 40+.

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 3:26 GMT

    @kiran, agree, unless, of course, Swann was bowling, then Rogers was probably the worst to watch...unless you enjoy intense anxiety haha

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 0:14 GMT

    Rohan Kanhai when he was Captain said that he would like to have a player who scored regularly over 40 rather than score a century once in so many innings

  • POSTED BY ScottStevo on | February 27, 2014, 19:09 GMT

    @Dave1970, the knives are always out for older players; it's the Australian way. Marsh certainly does need to find more consistency, however, I disagree re Doolan. He isn't a world class number 3 batsman and is hardly a great shield #3. Although he played decently in the first test, it was his innings in our 2nd dig that started the rot. With his consistent edges and constantly being beaten teamed with his inability to hit the ball off the square or even find a gap to rotate the strike, moved all the pressure off the SA bowlers that our openers had created onto our batting line up. Sure, it didn't help that Marsh got a pair, but Doolan looks as comfortable at #3 at this level as bladder surgery with a cystoscope. For me, he's the first guy to be removed from the side for Watson. Whether Watson or Marsh bats at 3 is a tough one and Clarke should move back to 4. He certainly should've come out at 4 in our last innings...

  • POSTED BY Sachit1979 on | February 27, 2014, 16:44 GMT

    Chris Rogers finally got his fortune smiling on him during last lag of his career. I wish he enjoys atleast 2 years of international recognition based on his recent form and performance. Unfortunately same could not happen with Brad Hodge and David Hussey. Not sure why these players were not given due chances when they really deserved. I felt all of these guys were always better than Shaun Marsh, Philip Hughes, Glenn Maxwell and Usman Khawaja and few more.

  • POSTED BY diegoblunt on | February 27, 2014, 8:48 GMT

    How absurd! The guy had 2 centuries and averaged 52 in the 3 tests prior to this one. How could he possibly be under pressure?

  • POSTED BY Dave1970 on | February 25, 2014, 22:54 GMT

    Over the past ten tests Rogers has been one of Aussies best performing batsmen. It seems that, unless you have had an already long career, the knives are being sharpened when you fail a few times. Not every innings will be a big innings. Rogers is safe.

    Aussie issue is the middle order, and while Marsh scored a century on his return, it is his inability to string consistent sores.

    Doolan is a little different, it is his first taste and needs time to settle in. No doubt he has the technique and the temperament, just lacks the confidence and stability of playing in the team for an extended time. Chopping and changing does not do any side any good at any time.

    As much as I think Watson has been given too much time for the return he has produced, his last ten tests have been good. If he does come back in then, IMO, Marsh out and Watson at six, Clarke to 4, smith to 5.

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 18:12 GMT

    I love the way Chris Rogers bat. Very simple and uncomplicated technique, very neat player. I wish he had been drafted into the Australian team when he was 20. He literally plays the ball under his nose, and is able to find gaps as well as play strokes all around the ground without any flashy strokeplay. To me personally, other than Michael Clarke he is the best batsman to watch in the Australian team.

  • POSTED BY mondotv on | March 2, 2014, 6:25 GMT

    And who would he have replaced @ 20? Matthew Hayden or Justin Langer? He's not as good as either of them. I also don't agree on technique - its Ok but he shuffles across a bit like Katich and on wickets that seam a bit is more susceptible to LBW a he's always back. He also looks particularly vunerable to spin, falling to Swann numerous times after getting a start. There just doesn't seem a lot of future to me in picking a 36 year old - he's a stop gap at best.

  • POSTED BY cricketsubh on | February 28, 2014, 5:41 GMT

    i donot think why people put pressure on rogers to score runs in every test match to ciment his spot he score 4 tons in just 13 test and 2 tons he made in oversees conditions as a opner he avs 40 what can he do more as a test opner in australia,south africe and england pitches are not flat like india,srilanka,they are gud for fast bowling and as a opner in these pitches ,makeing runs is not a easy job so stop talking about rogers when he fails to score runs .

  • POSTED BY ThinkingCricket on | February 28, 2014, 4:56 GMT

    "I wish he had been drafted into the Australian team when he was 20."

    Oh the irony! That kind of thinking is precisely why he is under pressure and why players like Katich and Hodge were kicked out irrespective of performance. Any team would be served by looking only at performance and not age, whether the player is 16 years old or 40+.

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 3:26 GMT

    @kiran, agree, unless, of course, Swann was bowling, then Rogers was probably the worst to watch...unless you enjoy intense anxiety haha

  • POSTED BY on | February 28, 2014, 0:14 GMT

    Rohan Kanhai when he was Captain said that he would like to have a player who scored regularly over 40 rather than score a century once in so many innings

  • POSTED BY ScottStevo on | February 27, 2014, 19:09 GMT

    @Dave1970, the knives are always out for older players; it's the Australian way. Marsh certainly does need to find more consistency, however, I disagree re Doolan. He isn't a world class number 3 batsman and is hardly a great shield #3. Although he played decently in the first test, it was his innings in our 2nd dig that started the rot. With his consistent edges and constantly being beaten teamed with his inability to hit the ball off the square or even find a gap to rotate the strike, moved all the pressure off the SA bowlers that our openers had created onto our batting line up. Sure, it didn't help that Marsh got a pair, but Doolan looks as comfortable at #3 at this level as bladder surgery with a cystoscope. For me, he's the first guy to be removed from the side for Watson. Whether Watson or Marsh bats at 3 is a tough one and Clarke should move back to 4. He certainly should've come out at 4 in our last innings...

  • POSTED BY Sachit1979 on | February 27, 2014, 16:44 GMT

    Chris Rogers finally got his fortune smiling on him during last lag of his career. I wish he enjoys atleast 2 years of international recognition based on his recent form and performance. Unfortunately same could not happen with Brad Hodge and David Hussey. Not sure why these players were not given due chances when they really deserved. I felt all of these guys were always better than Shaun Marsh, Philip Hughes, Glenn Maxwell and Usman Khawaja and few more.

  • POSTED BY diegoblunt on | February 27, 2014, 8:48 GMT

    How absurd! The guy had 2 centuries and averaged 52 in the 3 tests prior to this one. How could he possibly be under pressure?

  • POSTED BY macZZZ on | February 27, 2014, 8:36 GMT

    AGREE 100% >>>>>>>>>>>>>>>

    VERY WELL COMPOSED ... THANK YOU :)

    Posted by Kiran DS on (February 25, 2014, 18:12 GMT) - Featured comment

    I love the way Chris Rogers bat. Very simple and uncomplicated technique, very neat player. I wish he had been drafted into the Australian team when he was 20. He literally plays the ball under his nose, and is able to find gaps as well as play strokes all around the ground without any flashy strokeplay. To me personally, other than Michael Clarke he is the best batsman to watch in the Australian team.

  • POSTED BY Simoc on | February 27, 2014, 8:28 GMT

    My feeling is that an unchanged lineup is the way to go but I'm pretty sure Watson will come into the team. Whoever goes is unlucky but it will be either Doolan or Marsh but it is possible though unlikely the normal fall guy, Lyon will be left out.

  • POSTED BY Beertjie on | February 26, 2014, 18:01 GMT

    There are no good reasons for not permitting Bucky the occasional double failure (unlike Marsh). Hope he lasts another couple of years as the steady consistent foil to Davey.

  • POSTED BY PrasPunter on | February 26, 2014, 6:33 GMT

    Fine. For all the talk about SA's comeback and Steyn's fabulous bowling, got a thought - if they were utterly ineffective in the first test and appeared awesome only after a change in the nature of the track, what way are they better than Aus ? Both teams did well in conditions suited to them . SA's batting appeared 'out-of-depth' as pointed out by Cullinan after game 1, the same way as how Aus batting looked in game 2. At-least with the games played, there is not much difference between the way they performed.

  • POSTED BY spinkingKK on | February 26, 2014, 6:09 GMT

    Good to see that, after performing like a champion in the recently concluded Ashes, Rogers is not taking anything for granted. That shows how hard is it to remain in the Australian side.

  • POSTED BY Ozcricketwriter on | February 26, 2014, 5:37 GMT

    Chris Rogers had a horrible 1st test but a great 2nd. He has been a bit like that for his whole career (short though it is). Now, all of a sudden, the two stars with the bat in the 1st test, Doolan and Marsh, are on the chopping blocks after failing in the 2nd. My tip is that both will be out and Hughes and Watson will both come in. I am also predicting Siddle and Harris to go, to make way for Pattinson and Bird. Will see if that is right.

  • POSTED BY Batmanian on | February 26, 2014, 4:54 GMT

    @Ian James, yes, exactly the behaviour that mars the credibility of India's more vociferous fans. A problem for Australia is that the 'project player' approach has been so unsuccessful with the batsmen. Khawaja was the most obvious example... He looked Test material on the four occasions he was drafted in, took the field, didn't look Test material, and was hailed as the kind of player to persist with, until that was no longer tenable. Players who looked too improv for Tests - Warner and Smith - have worked in the end, but as fix-it guys rather than project players. I think both Marsh and Doolan can be justified as fully-fledged Test material rather than speculative projects, so I say keep them.

  • POSTED BY MinusZero on | February 26, 2014, 4:03 GMT

    Watson should also be thinking his next test will be his last...but unfortunately the selectors have him on the "to be selected without reason" list.

  • POSTED BY VillageGreen on | February 26, 2014, 3:35 GMT

    The pressure on fresh 1st and 2nd drops is partly on the opening pair seeing off the new ball and building some kind of platform for the entire innings. You can't keep getting out for single figures and exposing the rest of the batting order to fresh bowlers with a new ball.

    But its also on the more experienced players lower down the order to play higher and sheild the likes of Doolan & Marsh whilst they find their feet. Watson at 3, Clarke at 4, Smith at 5.

    But if Steyne keeps reversing we need someone to show the way. Well done Bucky.

  • POSTED BY Mervo on | February 26, 2014, 2:56 GMT

    Now pick Voges and stop the age excuse.

  • POSTED BY kensohatter on | February 26, 2014, 2:49 GMT

    @Saffacricket No doubt Warners comments were average but I dont think your captain is much better. After the first test rather than give Johnson the respect he deserved for his performance he blamed the pitch (in his own country no less). Clarke praised Steyn for his efforts even if he may have had some doubts of the tactics used to get reverse swing. Its already been documented that your team has been in trouble lately doctoring the board pretty sure Faf got fined for it. So dont question the sportsmanship of the Australians till your own house is in order. Also whilst im having a go at South Africans your no.1 team seems very fragile. Sure we may lose next test but yours is a team in decline and next world cup you will once again show the world what first class chokers you are!

  • POSTED BY Big_Maxy_Walker on | February 26, 2014, 2:00 GMT

    show that he could actually play? Are you kidding Mr Brettig? Nearly 20,000 first class runs says he can play. If only he had been given some selection confidence and consistency after Hayden retired. Rogers could have been up there with the all time best Aussie openers. Instead the likes of Cowan, Hughes etc(both with much worse records) were given extended runs instead.

  • POSTED BY ShutTheGate on | February 26, 2014, 1:20 GMT

    I think that Rogers will perform well in the U.A.E when we play Pakistan there later in the year. However he does have the highest Sheffield Shield run scorer in Phil Hughes breathing down his neck for his spot - which is a good thing.

    I'd expect that Rogers and Smith will be averaging over 40 by the end of the year, which will result in 4 of the Australian top 6 having test averages over 40, probably placing us 2 or 3 in the world as a batting group.

    I'd continue with Doolan at number 3 as he has shown promise and 2 tests are not enough to know whether he has the ability to step up.

  • POSTED BY Mervo on | February 26, 2014, 0:47 GMT

    Let's hope that a 'designed' wicket does not ensue and that a normal wicket for the location is prepared. Australia has such a broad range of wickets with great variation between them. Brisbane and Perth more bouncy, with some good spin in Brisbane. Adelaide slower with more spin on offer, Melbourne quite low and also a bit slow in the second innings. Tasmania pretty flat and hard work for all bowlers. And last, Sydney always has good spin as well as some early pace available. We are lucky that we have such diversity and that we don't have to specially 'prepare' wickets as seems the case in some nations.

  • POSTED BY mike_b on | February 25, 2014, 23:48 GMT

    @Jimmyvida - I agree with you. SA need to doctor the wicket to negate Johnson.If they don't,then we might see some more bad SA batting (apart from the admirable ABDV) as in the 1st test.Correct me if I'm wrong,but Australia has scored 4 centuries to SA's 3 and SA have scored the two lowest totals of the series. G.Smith is far & away the worst batsman on display at the moment.Lucky he's captain otherwise the walking wicket (A.Peterson) would be coming back in. SA are rightly the top ranked team in the world BUT they did cop an absolute shellacking in the 1st test because they were complacent & arrogant. I'm an Aust fan but I do expect SA to win the final test.However, they will lose if they don't bring their A-game. Aust are a work in progress & a team on the rise.They have weaknesses but have shown enough in recent months to suggest that top teams need to be wary of them. To all you Indians who read these posts & always want to drag the topic back to your team, watch out next summer!

  • POSTED BY RandyOZ on | February 25, 2014, 23:17 GMT

    Tests played: 9 Innings batted: 15 Batting Average: 32.86 Ducks: 6 Duck %: 40% Other things, that when in a Test, show 40% duck: These pillows. They are certified 40% duck. They also come in pairs, just like Shaun Marsh Golden Ducks / Duck ratio: 33% Times selected when Shield form hasn't supported the selection: Every time he has been selected Achievements earned in last 4 balls faced in Test cricket: 3 dismissals. 1 dot ball Average versus India: 2.83 Average when Australia has won the toss: 3.40 Average when Australia has won the toss and batted: 1.50 Average in 4th innings: 0.00 Average when match won: 26.12 Average when match lost: 11.00 Average when match drawn: 80.00 Yep. Shaun Marsh is a drawn game specialist People who have earned a Test spot that he is keeping out of the side: Phil Hughes, Marcus North, Glenn Maxwell, Xavier Doherty, Ishant Sharma, Alviro Petersen, Rolf Harris, Stifler's Mum, Forrest Gump.

  • POSTED BY bobagorof on | February 25, 2014, 23:07 GMT

    @Ian James: That's the nature of sport, I'm afraid. Unfortunately the Australian batting lineup can be quite brittle and the selectors (and public) want to find guys who will be consistent. If either Marsh or Doolan had got to 20 in the first innings of the 2nd Test they'd probably be safe. As it is, they're in the same situation Phil Hughes was in England. Marsh in particular is a concern as he is either feast or famine.

  • POSTED BY sifter132 on | February 25, 2014, 21:56 GMT

    I like Rogers, but I can't help but think of Marcus North at the same time. He was exactly the player who seemed to do nothing until his head was on the block, then he'd make a 100. I don't think Rogers is to that extreme, but you need to keep an eye on players and how they motivate themselves. If Rogers needs to feel pressure, then tell him his spot is under threat every game!

  • POSTED BY ygkd on | February 25, 2014, 20:49 GMT

    It's not always how many you make - it's often when you make 'em that counts and Rogers is one who can stand up and be counted when it matters most. He is the anti-T20 type - a proper opener. As for Marsh and Doolan - their success thus far can, to some extent, be summed up by a word that rhymes with type - ie. hype. Rogers has the experience of over 21,000 FC runs to his name. Neither Marsh nor Doolan have a quarter of that.

  • POSTED BY jimmyvida on | February 25, 2014, 20:14 GMT

    Hope SA preparing third test wicket similar to second test. Negate Johnson and Australia are in all sorts of trouble. Warner, hanging around with luck for the entire side. Australia's batting looks terrible.

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 20:09 GMT

    It's interesting how one after the last test match Doolan and Marsh were being hailed as saviours and Australia's middle order was safe for the next 10 years and after one bad Test Match,people are calling for their heads,questioning their abiility or suggesting that one or both be replaced in the team.

  • POSTED BY AlSmug on | February 25, 2014, 19:59 GMT

    @saffacricket i can think of at least one ,Kepler Wessels mind you he was far from being an Australian great

  • POSTED BY Chris_P on | February 25, 2014, 19:39 GMT

    @ xtrafalgarx, Marsh might have only have played less than 10 tests but he has been showing us his lack of test standard readiness for over 12 years. 6 Ducks in his past 11 test innings, 9 centuries in 12 seasons sort of tells us what we should be expecting in tests I would suggest. As for Buck, this guy has been performing, at first class level, for over 15 years with a 50 average. He may have the odd blip, but his history suggests he would return & contribute. You really got to both admire & respect these type of players. They may not have the ability of others, but they work hard & put in the yard yards for the team. Every country has them, the trouble is they rarely get recognized.

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 18:47 GMT

    Really-Why is he under pressure? He is one of the few consistent bats who has scored centuries and runs-honestly compare his performance with that of WAtson or Clarke for last one year. His age should not be an issue

  • POSTED BY SevereCritic on | February 25, 2014, 17:57 GMT

    Don't understand why CA is going after Rogers even before the PE innings. His solidity actually enables Warner to bat more freely. CA should look at their middle order specifically at Clarke's form-- he has been remarkably mediocre for a batsman of his stature.

  • POSTED BY McTSA on | February 25, 2014, 17:38 GMT

    Rogers ton in PE was a pleasure to watch. He earned the respect of plenty of South Africans. He played under immense pressure while his mates were dropping like skittles around him.

    I can only hope that he gets a chance to cement his place alongside Warner. If dropped, Chris it would be fantastic to have you in South Africa ;)

  • POSTED BY Saffacricket on | February 25, 2014, 15:08 GMT

    Great knock by Rogers, and well deserved. CA would be mad to drop him. Telling hat Steyn and Smith went straight to congratulate him. He has earned respect!

  • POSTED BY Saffacricket on | February 25, 2014, 15:01 GMT

    What a poor advertisement for Australian cricket! An average player, a big mouth, and a boor. Sore loser, end of! That's not honesty, nor telling it like it is. It's whingeing, moaning, poor sportsmanship, and a disgrace. Wonderful fodder for all the Aussie bashers. If you lose, you take it on the chin. Pup would never make that sort of comment in the media. Nor would Punter have done, nor McGrath, Lee, or any other Aussie great I can think of.

  • POSTED BY bablankalhan55_youtube on | February 25, 2014, 14:23 GMT

    Indian fan here..I remember bespectacled Chris Roger's debut against India at Perth..He has hit 3 hundreds in his last 4 tests,howcome he is in pressure to save his place.Shaun Marsh must be axed and Watson must be brought in his place..I think Pattinson should get a look in ahead of Siddle(though he is bowling well)..still think it will be South Africans who will reign supreme at Cape Town...All the best both teams

  • POSTED BY jmcilhinney on | February 25, 2014, 13:54 GMT

    I agree with a few comments I've seen around the place that Australia seem a little bit obsessed with quick scoring. As far as I'm concerned, Rogers is the only true opener that Australia have and they'd be foolish to let him go at this stage.

  • POSTED BY HatsforBats on | February 25, 2014, 12:17 GMT

    Rogers should've played 50 tests by now. It just makes me cringe every time I recall how our national selectors have blundered through the wilderness since 2006/7. Just think, for a good 5/6 years we could have played a combination of Rogers, MHussey, Ponting, Hodge, Katich, DHUssey, Clarke, whilst introducing young talents with good shield records down @ 6. Isn't this the pathway to success, rather than punting on below average players with a nice cover drive?

    Well played Rogers. It's not how, it's how many.

  • POSTED BY featurewriter on | February 25, 2014, 11:43 GMT

    Rogers has three hundreds from his last four tests. He's about the only guy who is safe with the bat. My 11 for the third test would be: Rogers, Warner, Hughes, Clarke, Watson, Smith, Haddin, Johnson, Harris, Siddle, Lyon.

  • POSTED BY mixters on | February 25, 2014, 11:41 GMT

    @Posted by Barnesy4444 on (February 25, 2014, 9:42 GMT) Doolan and Marsh are lucky to be in the team at all, they are the ones who are one innings away from being dropped, not Rogers. Marsh is especially lucy, I'm just waiting for another two single figure scores this test........... Dolan and Marsh out, Hughes in the top three with Watson at 6 whether he bowls or not.

    Ahmen to this Hughes is there pick for gods sake pick him. I dont even see a writer metioning his name. I bet the saffers have not forgotten him

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 11:13 GMT

    Since the start of The Ashes in England last July, Rogers and Warner are the top run-scores! Rogers has 947 in 12 Tests at 41.2 and Warner has 924 in 10 Tests at 48.6. Next best is Smith with around 800 runs.

  • POSTED BY plymuth12 on | February 25, 2014, 11:03 GMT

    watson,doolan and marsh are all too overrated. watson would never have even scored 10 against a south african attack in its prime. doolan and marsh were not picked on form but on good technique. the selectors seem to caught up in the need to pick players who have beautiful techniques to pick the players dominating shield cricket.the australian team right now is this: rogers-not living up to the experience he was picked on,too old doolan-out of form marsh- gets injured too much and is very inconsistent haddin-though nothins wrong australia need to give exposure to younger players harris-past his prime

    rogers should be replaced by hughes doolan for khawaja marsh for burns/maxwell/lynn/cooper haddin for whiteman harris for cummins

  • POSTED BY gshaw on | February 25, 2014, 11:01 GMT

    A great fellow and a very good batsman (definitely among the best of the current lot, and I would even say, of all time for the Aussies), if Rogers' place is under threat, there is something seriously wrong with the CA perspective.

  • POSTED BY xtrafalgarx on | February 25, 2014, 10:58 GMT

    @Barnsey: SLow down mate, Doolan's only played a couple of tests bro. Even Marsh hasn't even played 10 tests yet, take it easy, they might come good. Amla averaged 25 in his first 15 tests, but he is a gun now.

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 10:46 GMT

    3 centuries in his last 4 Tests. What's the problem?

  • POSTED BY Gzero on | February 25, 2014, 10:45 GMT

    He is the most classic Australian opener after Justin langer.

  • POSTED BY R_U_4_REAL_NICK on | February 25, 2014, 10:19 GMT

    "You have to read the situation, and play to your limitations as well," [Roger's said]; "Once it starts reversing, committing to big drives is probably out of the question."

    100% true. Biggest problem with Australian batsmen is that they don't realise/remember this. = Main reason they lost Game 2. Australia will struggle to capture and hold the number one position in tests, unless they rectify this major problem. Bowlers like Johnson also need to find another string to their bow for pitches where out-and-out pace just isn't enough - and it rarely is in cricket anyway.

  • POSTED BY Whatsgoinoffoutthere on | February 25, 2014, 10:14 GMT

    @ Barnesy4444:

    "Marsh is especially lucy" may have been a typo, but for a long time now, whenever he's mentioned I'll be thinking of him as Lucy Marsh!

    The more I think of it, I'd go with dropping Doolan and Marsh and bringing back Watson. The final place can go to Darren Lehmann!

  • POSTED BY Barnesy4444 on | February 25, 2014, 9:42 GMT

    Doolan and Marsh are lucky to be in the team at all, they are the ones who are one innings away from being dropped, not Rogers.

    Marsh is especially lucy, I'm just waiting for another two single figure scores this test...........

    Dolan and Marsh out, Hughes in the top three with Watson at 6 whether he bowls or not.

  • POSTED BY 2jono on | February 25, 2014, 9:38 GMT

    A champion player who has proved himself in County Cricket in the UK and in Australia playing for WA and now Victoria. In other words he scores runs on all types of wickets and can play the swinging Ball unlike many of his fellow countrymen. His skills are needed in the Australian Team ! Rogers the maker of Tough Runs ..

  • POSTED BY PrasPunter on | February 25, 2014, 9:38 GMT

    @kensohatter , the worst part was that we didn't pick him after Haydos and Langer retired, thereby wasting 3-4 years to find a good opener. He makes a good combo with Warner .

  • POSTED BY PrasPunter on | February 25, 2014, 9:36 GMT

    Wondering why his place must be under scrutiny !! These old-school boys won us the Ashes this time - MJ, Rhino, Haddin and to some extent Clarke and Rogers , not to forget Warner and Smith's contributions. Play for the present. No point looking too deep into the future. Nobody knows what will happen tomorrow !!

  • POSTED BY Lyall_Dick on | February 25, 2014, 9:35 GMT

    Rogers scores 3 hundreds in 4 matches and his place is under threat. CA needs its head checked.

  • POSTED BY android_user on | February 25, 2014, 9:35 GMT

    well done aussiess

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 9:20 GMT

    From a South African - I really admire this guys guts. Good for him - I hope he fails in Cape Town and goes on to have a great career - like another late entrant into test cricket - Mike Hussey.

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 9:05 GMT

    A lot of Australia"s recent successes have been because of Rogers and Warner. I like Rogers because he is a traditional opener who plays the ball late and gets the shine off the ball. The problem is with the batsman from 3 to 6 with the notable exception of Steve Smith . They have been extremely inconsistent and Clarke has been going thru a diabolical run . It is true that Haddin and the tail flattered the . aussie totals and it is not happening here, so far at least. Succeeding against this top flight south african attack calls for luck and abililty. Warner has had both while Rogers has ability . He should play as long as he is able to . I like his tenacity and guts and australia needs him,not one more dasher . Ramanujam sridhar

  • POSTED BY android_user on | February 25, 2014, 8:32 GMT

    very nice

  • POSTED BY ModernUmpiresPlz on | February 25, 2014, 8:22 GMT

    He's the only Aussie bat who is able to play late enough to handle a reversing ball due to his many years in county cricket. Hopefully he can pass some of that on before he retires because it's becoming a very old story for Australia. Hey we're going great, oh no, it's reverse swinging, 5 minutes later we're all out.

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 8:14 GMT

    I really hate this mindset. The fact is that we need Rogers more than he needs the Baggygreen. He is clearly, along with Warner, one of the best opening bats we have. Unless Hughes can prove himself next time around I'd go so far as to say he and Warner are the only two guys we have that can perform at this level as openers. Hughes and North are the only two guys I'd consider bringing in, in his place. Bucky deserves and has already earned a good two years in the team. If he is left there long enough he'll average 45+, of that I have no doubts!

  • POSTED BY uynamihba on | February 25, 2014, 8:02 GMT

    I like Chris Rogers. Hope to see him score a few more hundreds.

  • POSTED BY kensohatter on | February 25, 2014, 7:52 GMT

    Great player. Lots of domestic runs and now showing just how good he is on the international stage. Age will be a factor for Rogers though and Australia may look ahead to the next Ashes after this SA tour and pick another opener (probably Hughes) but id prefer if they moved Marsh to open, Doolan at 3 and then Faulkner at 6. I do feel for Rogers cause he is class but his selection was always a stop gap measure to add some experience to a young side facing the worlds best. He can hold is head up high and know that he belonged at international level and had he not had to wait behind Hayden and Langer probably would have played many more games for his country. Thanks Bucky now go out on a high and destroy SA.

  • POSTED BY kensohatter on | February 25, 2014, 7:52 GMT

    Great player. Lots of domestic runs and now showing just how good he is on the international stage. Age will be a factor for Rogers though and Australia may look ahead to the next Ashes after this SA tour and pick another opener (probably Hughes) but id prefer if they moved Marsh to open, Doolan at 3 and then Faulkner at 6. I do feel for Rogers cause he is class but his selection was always a stop gap measure to add some experience to a young side facing the worlds best. He can hold is head up high and know that he belonged at international level and had he not had to wait behind Hayden and Langer probably would have played many more games for his country. Thanks Bucky now go out on a high and destroy SA.

  • POSTED BY uynamihba on | February 25, 2014, 8:02 GMT

    I like Chris Rogers. Hope to see him score a few more hundreds.

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 8:14 GMT

    I really hate this mindset. The fact is that we need Rogers more than he needs the Baggygreen. He is clearly, along with Warner, one of the best opening bats we have. Unless Hughes can prove himself next time around I'd go so far as to say he and Warner are the only two guys we have that can perform at this level as openers. Hughes and North are the only two guys I'd consider bringing in, in his place. Bucky deserves and has already earned a good two years in the team. If he is left there long enough he'll average 45+, of that I have no doubts!

  • POSTED BY ModernUmpiresPlz on | February 25, 2014, 8:22 GMT

    He's the only Aussie bat who is able to play late enough to handle a reversing ball due to his many years in county cricket. Hopefully he can pass some of that on before he retires because it's becoming a very old story for Australia. Hey we're going great, oh no, it's reverse swinging, 5 minutes later we're all out.

  • POSTED BY android_user on | February 25, 2014, 8:32 GMT

    very nice

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 9:05 GMT

    A lot of Australia"s recent successes have been because of Rogers and Warner. I like Rogers because he is a traditional opener who plays the ball late and gets the shine off the ball. The problem is with the batsman from 3 to 6 with the notable exception of Steve Smith . They have been extremely inconsistent and Clarke has been going thru a diabolical run . It is true that Haddin and the tail flattered the . aussie totals and it is not happening here, so far at least. Succeeding against this top flight south african attack calls for luck and abililty. Warner has had both while Rogers has ability . He should play as long as he is able to . I like his tenacity and guts and australia needs him,not one more dasher . Ramanujam sridhar

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 9:20 GMT

    From a South African - I really admire this guys guts. Good for him - I hope he fails in Cape Town and goes on to have a great career - like another late entrant into test cricket - Mike Hussey.

  • POSTED BY android_user on | February 25, 2014, 9:35 GMT

    well done aussiess

  • POSTED BY Lyall_Dick on | February 25, 2014, 9:35 GMT

    Rogers scores 3 hundreds in 4 matches and his place is under threat. CA needs its head checked.

  • POSTED BY PrasPunter on | February 25, 2014, 9:36 GMT

    Wondering why his place must be under scrutiny !! These old-school boys won us the Ashes this time - MJ, Rhino, Haddin and to some extent Clarke and Rogers , not to forget Warner and Smith's contributions. Play for the present. No point looking too deep into the future. Nobody knows what will happen tomorrow !!