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Super Series 2005-06

Former players call Martyn a 'scapegoat'

Cricinfo staff

September 21, 2005

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Damien Martyn was prolific before the Ashes © Getty Images
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Damien Martyn's Test-team dumping has disappointed the former Australia and Western Australia bowlers Terry Alderman and Wayne Clark, who believe the batsman was made a "scapegoat" after one bad series. Martyn was one of three changes to the side for the Super Test against the World XI next month alongside Jason Gillespie and Michael Kasprowicz.

Terry Alderman said in The Age the selectors had forgotten that Martyn had carried Australia's batting "for a fair bit". "He is no different to two or three others in England - Matthew Hayden springs to mind," Alderman, who took 170 wickets in 41 Tests, said. "It's a big stick to wield on Martyn."

Clark, the Western Australia coach, said he was surprised by the decision. "[He's] a little bit of a scapegoat again," Clark told the paper. "One poor series and even then he performed well in the first Test and got two absolute incompetent decisions. I thought they may have put him on notice, but for him to be dropped, we're very disappointed."

After being Australia's star batsman for the 17 Tests leading up to the Ashes, Martyn scored only 178 runs against England. Trevor Hohns, the chairman of selectors, told Martyn he was not finished and to "throw performances back at us". "A player like that, with his experience and his class, is never written off," Hohns said in the Daily Telegraph.

However, the one-day future of Matthew Hayden, who was dropped with Kasprowicz and Gillespie, is less certain after Hohns said he would like him to focus more on Tests. "The past 12 months for Matthew in one-day cricket, even by his own admission, hasn't been great for him," he said in The Age. "We considered that it was now time to move on and try something else. It doesn't mean he's finished. Also, we'd like him to concentrate on his long-form-of-the-game batting and reignite that partnership that he has with Justin Langer."

The Super Test begins on October 14 at the SCG. Brad Hodge, Shane Watson and Stuart MacGill were yesterday called up to the squad for the six-day match.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

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