Australia v England, 1st ODI, Melbourne January 9, 2014

Johnson to rest, Bailey seeks his best

107

Mitchell Johnson will be the first of Australia's Test players to be rested in the upcoming one-day series against England, but George Bailey will be one Ashes winner keen to take every opportunity to play. Bailey is the only member of Australia's unchanged XI throughout the Ashes whose Test position could be considered in danger ahead of next month's tour of South Africa, and there is no Sheffield Shield cricket for him to regain form before the trip.

In the lead-up to the Ashes in Australia, the selectors made it clear that one-day form on October's tour of India would be considered in picking the Test squad and Bailey's remarkable ODI efforts in India earned him the No. 6 place for the Gabba Test. Bailey made batting contributions through the series, including 53 in Adelaide and 46 in Sydney, but his average of 26.14 reflected his status as the weakest link in the top seven.

Alex Doolan joined the Test squad in Sydney but was overlooked as the selectors opted for another unchanged side, but what they do with the No. 6 position in South Africa looms as the major selection decision. Bailey is Australia's vice-captain for the five ODIs against England, which begin in Melbourne on Sunday, and the matches will provide him with one last opportunity to find some runs before the Test squad is named.

"Every time you represent your country you're trying to play in all formats," Lehmann said on Thursday when asked about Bailey. "Every game, as we've talked about pre-summer and with the Indian one-day series, it's important for guys to make runs and take wickets."

One man whose Test place is under no scrutiny is Johnson, the Player of the Series in the 5-0 Ashes clean sweep. Although Johnson is part of the one-day squad the selectors have decided to rest him for the first match in Melbourne, with the intention that he will play the second ODI at the Gabba. Lehmann said several of the Test players would need a break at some point, but he wanted to avoid a situation like last summer when several high-profile men were all rested at the same time.

"It's obviously been a big summer for him so we're just giving him a short little break, making sure he's getting fresh for the other one-dayers as well [as the Tests]," Lehmann said of Johnson. "It's important we put the best side we possibly can out understanding it's been a hectic five Test matches and some of the Test boys especially are a bit weary.

"We'll sum it up as we go. We certainly don't want to go down the path previously where we've rested clumps of players. We want to pick and choose where we can do it. We want them to play in their home state and we want to make sure we're putting a good squad together looking ahead to the World Cup. This one-day format is very important for us."

The World Cup in Australia and New Zealand is just over a year away and the opportunities to settle on a preferred line-up will be slim, with no ODIs on the tour of South Africa and then Australia spending most of their winter at home. As well as working out a first-choice attack, the top of the order also poses a number of possibilities with Shane Watson, David Warner, Aaron Finch and Shaun Marsh all potential openers in this squad.

The series will also provide the first opportunity for James Pattinson to play international cricket since he suffered a back injury during the Ashes tour of England in July. Like Bailey, Pattinson will be hoping to press his case for selection on the Test tour of South Africa through the five one-day internationals over the coming weeks.

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

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • R_U_4_REAL_NICK on January 9, 2014, 9:58 GMT

    I think this is a very good move by Australia and once again proving that Boof is managing the players very respectively. Johnson can rest up and come back raring to go in the 2nd or even 3rd ODI. I'm really struggling to see England making any significant impacts this ODI series against a very strong Australian squad. I can't help but feel that maybe it's now time Clarke considers laying off the shorter formats (at least partially) to try and prolong his test career - especially now many of the younger players seem in terrific form and the likes of Bailey could competently take over the reins.

  • bren19 on January 10, 2014, 23:07 GMT

    I think that Bailey deserved his chance at Test level but is not a realistic long term proposition. I really think Aust have a great opportunity to blood their next number 3 (Watson is not it). Doolan or marsh maybe - bat them at 6 for a while, give them the best chance to succeed then they can make 3 their own. Same deal as ponting when he first started.

  • Biggus on January 10, 2014, 8:00 GMT

    @dunger.bob:- Don't be silly mate, you should know when an Indian starts an argument it's always the other person's fault.

  • dunger.bob on January 10, 2014, 7:29 GMT

    There was a good interview with Boof at a BBL match recently. They asked him what was the point of releasing test players to play in the BBL. He said he'd rather see them playing than training. There's nothing like playing to really sharpen you up he said. Can't be replicated in training he said. What if they get injured? he was asked. .. So be it, but I think the more you play the less you get injured. Most of our injuries were happening in training but weren't seen till match day.

    What a turn around from the "programmed maintenance" thinking behind the rotation policy. A welcome one too. I reckon he's spot on.

  • dunger.bob on January 10, 2014, 7:16 GMT

    @ xylo: I agree re. captaincy but I'm not sure it's a good idea to keep both in the team if they did it. Ego's and what not. I'd say to make Bailey captain you'd have to drop Clarke. Maybe they could work together seamlessly but I kind of doubt it.

    I'm not sure why Clarke's still playing ODI's but I guess that's up to him. Maybe the bloke just likes playing cricket and will take a gig wherever he can get it.

  • xtrafalgarx on January 10, 2014, 6:53 GMT

    @nthuq: Good point! A deck of cards would be quite hard to dislodge off the table haha. I think Cpt.Measter meant a house of cards.

  • dunger.bob on January 10, 2014, 6:46 GMT

    @ linguboy on (January 9, 2014, 11:30 GMT) : In keeping with the school yard mentality, one of your guys started it. We were posting along merrily then someone chimed in with the 'bounce-track-bully" schtick. .. We're not currently in the mood to put up with too much of that sort of thing so he got what he wanted, he wound a few up. Hooray for him, he's a real hero.

  • nthuq on January 10, 2014, 5:42 GMT

    Well said Cpt.Meanster. Just like the Australian ODI batting lineup, a *deck* of cards will not easily topple if rocked.

  • Biggus on January 10, 2014, 4:57 GMT

    @Cpt.Meanster:-"Finch, Warner, Watto, Pup, Bailey, Maxwell, Haddin, Faulkner and Mitch! How is that for a batting lineup?" - Looks like a deck of cards on a table. Shall I rock the table a bit ?" Perhaps advisable to selectively water it first.

  • xylo on January 10, 2014, 4:20 GMT

    I would rather have Bailey captain the ODI side. As good as Clarke is in tests, he isn't really captain material in the shorter formats. I continue to say this, and am yet to be proved wrong - Bailey is the Aussie version of Dhoni - calm, relaxed, ugly with technique but lethal with the bat and strategy.

  • R_U_4_REAL_NICK on January 9, 2014, 9:58 GMT

    I think this is a very good move by Australia and once again proving that Boof is managing the players very respectively. Johnson can rest up and come back raring to go in the 2nd or even 3rd ODI. I'm really struggling to see England making any significant impacts this ODI series against a very strong Australian squad. I can't help but feel that maybe it's now time Clarke considers laying off the shorter formats (at least partially) to try and prolong his test career - especially now many of the younger players seem in terrific form and the likes of Bailey could competently take over the reins.

  • bren19 on January 10, 2014, 23:07 GMT

    I think that Bailey deserved his chance at Test level but is not a realistic long term proposition. I really think Aust have a great opportunity to blood their next number 3 (Watson is not it). Doolan or marsh maybe - bat them at 6 for a while, give them the best chance to succeed then they can make 3 their own. Same deal as ponting when he first started.

  • Biggus on January 10, 2014, 8:00 GMT

    @dunger.bob:- Don't be silly mate, you should know when an Indian starts an argument it's always the other person's fault.

  • dunger.bob on January 10, 2014, 7:29 GMT

    There was a good interview with Boof at a BBL match recently. They asked him what was the point of releasing test players to play in the BBL. He said he'd rather see them playing than training. There's nothing like playing to really sharpen you up he said. Can't be replicated in training he said. What if they get injured? he was asked. .. So be it, but I think the more you play the less you get injured. Most of our injuries were happening in training but weren't seen till match day.

    What a turn around from the "programmed maintenance" thinking behind the rotation policy. A welcome one too. I reckon he's spot on.

  • dunger.bob on January 10, 2014, 7:16 GMT

    @ xylo: I agree re. captaincy but I'm not sure it's a good idea to keep both in the team if they did it. Ego's and what not. I'd say to make Bailey captain you'd have to drop Clarke. Maybe they could work together seamlessly but I kind of doubt it.

    I'm not sure why Clarke's still playing ODI's but I guess that's up to him. Maybe the bloke just likes playing cricket and will take a gig wherever he can get it.

  • xtrafalgarx on January 10, 2014, 6:53 GMT

    @nthuq: Good point! A deck of cards would be quite hard to dislodge off the table haha. I think Cpt.Measter meant a house of cards.

  • dunger.bob on January 10, 2014, 6:46 GMT

    @ linguboy on (January 9, 2014, 11:30 GMT) : In keeping with the school yard mentality, one of your guys started it. We were posting along merrily then someone chimed in with the 'bounce-track-bully" schtick. .. We're not currently in the mood to put up with too much of that sort of thing so he got what he wanted, he wound a few up. Hooray for him, he's a real hero.

  • nthuq on January 10, 2014, 5:42 GMT

    Well said Cpt.Meanster. Just like the Australian ODI batting lineup, a *deck* of cards will not easily topple if rocked.

  • Biggus on January 10, 2014, 4:57 GMT

    @Cpt.Meanster:-"Finch, Warner, Watto, Pup, Bailey, Maxwell, Haddin, Faulkner and Mitch! How is that for a batting lineup?" - Looks like a deck of cards on a table. Shall I rock the table a bit ?" Perhaps advisable to selectively water it first.

  • xylo on January 10, 2014, 4:20 GMT

    I would rather have Bailey captain the ODI side. As good as Clarke is in tests, he isn't really captain material in the shorter formats. I continue to say this, and am yet to be proved wrong - Bailey is the Aussie version of Dhoni - calm, relaxed, ugly with technique but lethal with the bat and strategy.

  • on January 10, 2014, 4:09 GMT

    Australia One day cricket line up : 1. Finch/ Hughes 2. warner/ Marsh 3. Watson 4. Clarke/ Voges 5. Bailey 6. Haddin/ Wade 7. Maxwell/ Faulkner/ Cutting 8. Starc/ Johnson 9. Pattinson/ Cummins 10. Mckay/ Coulter-nile 11. Lyon/ Doherty/ Ahmed We can use this lineup either way, who ever are in form. We could win the next world cup.

  • on January 10, 2014, 4:07 GMT

    Australia One day cricket line up : 1. Finch/ Hughes 2. warner/ Marsh 3. Watson 4. Clarke/ Voges 5. Bailey 6. Haddin/ Wade 7. Maxwell/ Faulkner/ Cutting 8. Starc/ Johnson 9. Pattinson/ Cummins 10. Mckay/ Coulter-nile 11. Lyon/ Doherty/ Ahmed We can use this lineup either way, who ever are in form. We could win the next world cup.

  • yuvi_gladiator on January 10, 2014, 3:36 GMT

    Aussies very strong indeed for the world cup. they have finally got their confidence back and we all know how dangerous they are when that happens. i respect how they play this game, lehmann has finally given the players their aggression back.

  • pkvedas on January 10, 2014, 3:06 GMT

    My 11 for Australia: Warner, Finch, Watson, Clarke, Bailey, Maxwell, Haddin, Faulknee,Johnson, Pattinson, Doherty

  • RednWhiteArmy on January 10, 2014, 2:57 GMT

    Bit disrespectful to the paying public resting the ashes man of the series in game 1.

  • Cpt.Meanster on January 10, 2014, 1:42 GMT

    @GoCho: "Finch, Warner, Watto, Pup, Bailey, Maxwell, Haddin, Faulkner and Mitch! How is that for a batting lineup?" - Looks like a deck of cards on a table. Shall I rock the table a bit ?

  • Cpt.Meanster on January 10, 2014, 1:39 GMT

    @ScottStevo: Now now buddy, your comment directed towards 'Ind faithful' is bordering on sleazy arrogance and heavy headedness. To discredit a nation's sporting achievements with total disregard to their people's sentiments and dedication or love towards that sport is stupidity of the highest degree. You say how Australia has achieved more than India. OF COURSE they should have achieved a lot more, after all they been playing cricket since the dawn of time itself isn't it ? Even a kindergarten kid can realise that. Oh yes, you guys have always done things well on the cricket field. You did lose spectacularly (4-0) to India recently and lost the ODI series by failing to remarkably defend consecutive 300+ scores. So yes, you did do 'well' to lose all those games. So I will give that to you. Oh and there's one thing you will NEVER beat Indians at; the love and passion our people show the game of cricket - a billion strong !

  • on January 10, 2014, 1:00 GMT

    australia has excellent pace bowling strength so no need to play johnson or harris. Rest them. try some young prospects. I reckon rest them for this series. so u have mckay, faulkener, doherty, pattinson/coulternile (any one with raw pace), and watson as the all rounder. So it is a good attack. I can't wait till pat cummins comes back. He is seriously quick and more accurate than johnson. He can also swing the ball away from right hander. He also has a brilliant slower ball.

  • Thegimp on January 10, 2014, 0:55 GMT

    @linguboy....damning statistic yes, 6-1 vs 8-0 however however India were beaten 6-1 by a side ranked lower than 4th while being ranked in the top 2 themselves. I would say that a side ranked 1 or 2 should be better than 6-1 in Australia don't you????

  • Rowayton on January 9, 2014, 23:48 GMT

    Can I just remind people that after we got walloped in the 2010/11 Ashes, Australia won the ODIs 6-1. We didn't care much then and I doubt if we'll care much if we lose these ones. Lehmann is quite right to rotate his squad in ODIs other than tournaments like the World Cup, because they are basically exhibition games. And to the person who said the SCG pitch was doctored - can you point to one wicket that fell as a direct result of the pitch? Maybe Haddin getting bowled by a full toss?

  • Shaggy076 on January 9, 2014, 23:43 GMT

    Karan Verma; When did the sub continent only become India? Check our record in Pakistan and Sri Lanka before making such a statement.

  • Shaggy076 on January 9, 2014, 23:34 GMT

    In 9 weeks Johnson has played 5 tests and a shield game. Bowled 225 overs. There is only one pace bowler in the shield games that was able to play all 6 shield matches over a similar period and that is Sayers. It is a massive work load and he deserves the rest. Those that saying he doesn't are just selfish.

  • on January 9, 2014, 22:34 GMT

    Australia should always play their best team. I understand player workloads and what excessive cricket can do, but if that is the case then don't have these poinltess series. Bi-lateral ODI series have so significant anyway. Their not world cup qualifiers or anything.

  • Mervo on January 9, 2014, 21:46 GMT

    I think we are all looking forward to the Indian team visiting Australia again. Players like Pujara and Kholi will be particularly successful with their strong back foot technical capacity. Others maybe as well, such as Dharwan. Bowling will again be India's problem. Because our turf wickets are quite balanced, good spinners with control of flight and spin will do well here, as did Nathan Lyon, but India needs some decent pace bowlers. Their development is often neglected in India with the low, slow, grassless wickets that are so often prepared. Also spinners will need to learn to use flight and droop more than the prodigious side spin that they often get on some dusty Indian wickets. So for success in Australia by India - a balanced attack for our wickets that can reward batmen and bowlers with all round skills.

  • whocareswhowins on January 9, 2014, 21:38 GMT

    @thiruven, Thank you for the digs...I presume at one particular subcontinent team?? The very fact that you had to bother to be sarcastic (when the topic is about Australia and the 2015 WC) shows that there will always be some people rattled or upset about something or the other... No matter, on a more reasonable note, Australia performed superbly in India in the ODI series with Johnson making the Indian batsmen hop around on Indian pitches!! That was when I started to believe he would be more than a handful during the Ashes. They have a big pool of fast bowlers to choose from during the WC and should do very well. But home pressures can do strange things to team psyche...hope they can counter that. NZ traditionally do very well and punch above their weight in limited overs tournaments. So, it should be a great WC.

  • Mervo on January 9, 2014, 21:34 GMT

    Give the Test players, especially the bowlers a decent rest. And drop Glenn Maxwell! I cannot see how his batting or his bowling earn him place in any representative cricket. He is just awful to watch.

  • VivGilchrist on January 9, 2014, 20:50 GMT

    ODI series between Australia and England, so why I am I reading posts about India?Please realize that the Indian team holds very little interest outside of India. Thank you.

  • thiruven on January 9, 2014, 19:19 GMT

    The main difference between OZ and other teams: the will and determination to succeed and treat failure as a learning opportunity. No wonder, they seem to win more world cups (not decades apart). The next set of stars are on the way.

    The one team that can give Ozzies, a run for the money are the Kiwis. Rest need a miracle unless you are playing on flat-tracks.

  • on January 9, 2014, 18:30 GMT

    @abhishiek-first of all I completely disagree with your argument. ....... I think the Indian team is under transformation.......... yes they have not performed overseas.. and we don't have a world class bowler... but you keep forgetting that.... teams like.... Australia and SA have not performed well in the subcontinent. .... also..... India were one of the best performers... In SA. .. against a strong bowling attack......'India are a mediocre.... side'.... man.. have you ever even played cricket...?

  • indianzen on January 9, 2014, 18:21 GMT

    Every team are lions at home. Though I liked the way Aussies played the Ashes, I don't entirely agree that they are a very strong team. If you are to prove your strength, prove it in the sub continental pitches like India, SL, PAK where ball spins more and also swings like a dolly with less bounce...

  • GoCho on January 9, 2014, 16:56 GMT

    @Abhishek.2626, well said! Finally a fellow Indian speaking some sense in the comments section.

  • Abhishek.2626 on January 9, 2014, 16:16 GMT

    @Siddhartha87, Thats the perfect comment. The problem with majority of us Indians is that we go overboard in celebrating our success even though it comes against teams like Windies or NZ and that too super flat pitches at home. We need to see the big picture. India are just a mediocre side. A majority of our so called future superstars havnt performed away from home aprt from a Kohli and Pujara.

    We havnt got even one world class bowler without which there is no way we can win a test series away from home. We start singing paens about any new fast bowler who emerges. Like Shami at the moment. Talking as if he is our McGrath. But what happened in the past? Same things were said about Irfan, Ishant, Umesh etc who are just mediocre bowlers. Infact Kallis is a better bowler than most of our regular fast bowlers. And no wonder Australia have been team everybody looks upto. They have produced fabulous teams on so many occasions and I do hope they do once again.

  • GoCho on January 9, 2014, 16:12 GMT

    Finch, Warner, Watto, Pup, Bailey, Maxwell, Haddin, Faulkner and Mitch! How is that for a batting lineup? The next ODI world cup you know who the favourites are!

  • on January 9, 2014, 15:57 GMT

    My playing will be--- 1. Warner 2.finch 3.Watson 4.Clarke 5.Bailey 6. Maxwell 7. Haddin 8. Faulkner 9.Johnson 10. Pattinson 11.Doherty

  • xtrafalgarx on January 9, 2014, 15:48 GMT

    People are now saying Johnson is the only way Australia can win. How times change. There's more than enough backup for mitch, even though we love him.

  • ScottStevo on January 9, 2014, 15:29 GMT

    @GRVJPR, I'd suggest it's more likely with Harris than Johnson. Johnson's biggest issue has always been where he's been told he's the spearhead of the attack. It was thrust upon him too soon when Lee retired and he didn't cope. With Harris there now as the 'spearhead' and Siddle to work the long hours, Johnson has been given the freedom to throw them down fast without the fear that he HAS to be the lead man.

    @Ind faithful, not sure why you're here "crib" or "cribbling"! Firstly, please use words that are actually words. Secondly, please understand that you are always second best to Australia in cricket and have been always. We aren't jealous of anything you've ever done as we've done it and done it better than you ever will. Lastly, we always have bragging rights - tell us when you last won a series in Australia? Exactly! Even when you had your golden generation of batsmen you still played second fiddle to Aus. Keep dreaming you're us, it's about as close as you'll come!

  • Iddo555 on January 9, 2014, 15:27 GMT

    England Team

    Cook, Root, Bell, Morgan, Ballance, Stokes, Butler, Jordan, Broad, Briggs, Rankin

    subs

    Bopara, Bresnan, Carberry, Finn, Woakes, Tredwell

  • on January 9, 2014, 15:12 GMT

    @jeff mills Yes it is d same India on whose board CA along wid oders depend fr dere survival.

  • dabbadubba on January 9, 2014, 15:08 GMT

    are the ODI' s going to be played on doctored pitches like the SCG .. where the game finished within 3 days ?

  • dabbadubba on January 9, 2014, 15:05 GMT

    wasnt lehmann vocal about player rest and rotation being nonsense previously ? guess he's also changing his tunes once in the coachs chair

  • siddhartha87 on January 9, 2014, 14:38 GMT

    @Gsingh You can say that Australia's record outside their country is poor but please don't compare it to India's away record.India has manged to win just 2 series away from home in last 6 years.(one inNew Zeland 1-0 ,one in west indies 1-0) .On the other hand Australia has won series in SOuth Africa 2-1 in 2009,drawed the next series there. Has beaten Sri Lanka at home,also west indies and new zeland. India can win only win rank turners. We have seen how poor Ashwin is when cricket is played on sporting wicket. Statistically Australias' record away from home against Big four(SA,eng,Ind,Aus) outside home in last four years is 4-13 India's 1-10

  • on January 9, 2014, 14:34 GMT

    is that the same india that threatens to boycott series when the umps decisions go shsinst them... aust os performance is same as the rest.. but that will change.. our dominance was based on winning every where... india are poor travellers..always have been.

  • GRVJPR on January 9, 2014, 14:06 GMT

    Australia knows that all their success depends upon one man and that is "Johnson". They want to drag this old horse as long as they can to save their faces.

  • BradmanBestEver on January 9, 2014, 13:45 GMT

    The express train should be rested in the siding for while and get his wheels oiled and his leather buffed so he can be full steam ahead come Saffer time!

  • arup_g on January 9, 2014, 13:45 GMT

    Great that Australia can afford to rest their key bowler, and still have a very strong XI. Aus need to look after Johnson so that he is available for the major test series. With Pattinson coming back from injury, the bowling attack looks lethal!

    My XI for first ODI - Warner, Finch, Watson, Clarke, Bailey, Maxwell, Haddin, Faulkner (if fit) Pattinson,McKay, Doherty,

    Johnson will come back and replace Pattinson I guess?

  • on January 9, 2014, 13:02 GMT

    Mitch deserves a rest - welcome Pattinson to the party !

  • linguboy on January 9, 2014, 11:30 GMT

    @milepost: Where did I say Australian Cricket annoys me most. Its their fans cribbling that annoys me the most, Hope you read it correctly this time though. Doesn't it annoy you when an Indian tells you what kind of pitch to prepare in Australia??? same case here.

  • electric_loco_WAP4 on January 9, 2014, 11:29 GMT

    Why play Mitch in ODI/T20s when Aus can give a number of v talented young quicks exposure in short forms? Mitch should be rested and worked on/prep. to rock in coming SA tour. And Aus should easy c/sweep ODIs v Eng even with a 'B' team.

  • Meety on January 9, 2014, 11:23 GMT

    @R_U_4_REAL_NICK on (January 9, 2014, 9:58 GMT) - i agree with the concept of Clarke retiring from short forms, but a home World Cup next year means that ain't likely! @Just_Sam on (January 9, 2014, 10:09 GMT) - lol, you are 8 yrs old.

  • HatsforBats on January 9, 2014, 11:06 GMT

    @Just_Sam, I'll do you a favour and provide you the link...

    http://www.espncricinfo.com/india-v-australia-2013/content/story/622766.html?comments=all#usrcomment

    Yes, you are entitled to make as many stupid statements as you like. You've already made quite a few, I won't begrudge you a few more.

  • milepost on January 9, 2014, 11:01 GMT

    @linguboy, why are you posting here if Australian cricket annoys you so much. Get life a champ.

  • Just_Sam on January 9, 2014, 10:23 GMT

    My suggestion to Oz - Do not rest Johnson. Play him in at least first two ODI. Try to win both with best available team and put already low on confidence Englishmen again on back foot like tests. I dont think a professional athlete like Johnson is tired after just five tests. Rather he must be raring to go at them again. A break might change his focus to some other homely issue and he might just loose his rhythm. Right now he is in prime form and CA should make full use of it. Give a player a break when he asks for it and not before. Mind you this is very talented English side who if hit form will be very difficult to beat in any format. And a couple of consecutive wins can do the turn around. So like England in tests, complacency might prove to be Oz nemesis in ODI.

  • linguboy on January 9, 2014, 10:13 GMT

    @HatsForBats: Just one pitch but what about others???? did he just played in chennai only??? Saqluin Mustaq has very good figures on the same Chennai track. If he selectively WATERED OUTSIDE LEG WHT STOPPED HIM FROM BOWLING AROUND MIDDLE AND OFF STUMP. Please accept that WARNE had never been successfull in India irrespective of pitches and watering. Aussie EGO is preventing you from accepting that I think. TO OZ FAITHFULS, you have NO BRAGGING RIGHTS OVER US since our record stands at 6-1 in AUS in the last 2 series whereas your scoreline indicates 8-0 in India. Wait till you in a single test in India before shooting your mouths off. pls publish atleast this.

  • Just_Sam on January 9, 2014, 10:09 GMT

    @ HatsforBats - As per your own statement, the curator did not reveal the actual trick to Warne. So a secret Warne did not know, how do you know? Now please dont tell me that curator called you personally. And maybe your own Oz curator put a piece of sponge under the pitch surface for your bowlers to get extra lift and removed it when England bowled. You know I am also entitled for a few stupid statements myself.

  • Thegimp on January 9, 2014, 9:44 GMT

    It's not just Johnson's pace that makes him uncomfortable, it's being a slingy lefty. His short balls are up into your armpit. as a right hander your brain doesn't want to hook as the ball is still following you.

  • goodhoot on January 9, 2014, 9:42 GMT

    While most seem to have digressed from the article to argue,I'm pleased to see Boof has more wisdom than his predecessor and is now resting players when the opportunity arises.Letting Johnno have time at home with wife and daughter is very valuable but when the time comes he'll refreshed and ready.I imagine the same will happen with Peter Siddle and Ryan Harris and so on.Beats the other mindless that happened before

  • HatsforBats on January 9, 2014, 9:33 GMT

    @Just_Sam, actually when Warne played in Chennai in 1998 the curator selectively watered an area outside leg at each end of the pitch, specifically to disadvantage Warne. Australia lost. When Warne questioned the curator after the game as to why he couldn't gain any turn the curator chose to conceal his practices and suggested that perhaps Warne's troublesome shoulder was the problem. Perhaps if the pitch was prepared in an honest and faithful manner, then maybe Warne might have had more success on the "helpful" pitches of India.

  • on January 9, 2014, 9:28 GMT

    George Bailey is the best fielder in the ashesh series http://stats.espncricinfo.com/the-ashes-2013-14/engine/records/fielding/most_catches_career.html?id=7899

  • Just_Sam on January 9, 2014, 8:54 GMT

    To Oz faithfuls - In the hind sight, I think talented English side lost to Oz due to complacency and tiredness, rather than good performance of Oz. Same side beat India in India and Oz in England, reached number one spot and made the bloody stupid mistake of under estimating the opponent. Maybe, by the time they realised their mistake, they were already down 2-0. The loss and criticism put extra pressure to perform and forced them into bad shot selection and too much experiment with bowling strategies ultimately leading into further dip in confidence. As far as pace of Johnson is concerned, these days no batsman is bothered about pace anymore. Look at Tino Best of WI, who bowls 150+ but leaks so many runs without wickets. Steyn bowling around and under 140 made Indian dance to his tunes. Definitely Johnson is a very smart bowler who peaked at the right time for Oz against English men. But God forbids, if he looses form in SAF.

  • Vishnu27 on January 9, 2014, 8:41 GMT

    Just_Sam & gsingh7: getting nervous about December already? You should be. It'll be the same result as last time, except the deficits will be bigger.

  • PrasPunter on January 9, 2014, 8:40 GMT

    neil99 is FFL in disguise. Can't reveal himself after the battering his team just had. And funny how the indian fans react to Aus victory. When was the last time the indians won a series at home without help from their board and the pitch curators ?

  • Biggus on January 9, 2014, 8:34 GMT

    @Maelstromoracle:- No mate, the answer is money, they couldn't afford the tests to end in 2 days.

  • neil99 on January 9, 2014, 8:13 GMT

    Just_Sam

    " just to remind Oz (when they loose on foreign land), that their commentators & scribes keep cribbing and blame Tailor Made Home Pitches, Bad Weather Conditions, DRS, Umpiring, Partisan Crowd, Noise, Water etc (the list is endless) for their loss, rather than appreciate superior performance of the opponent. "

    Absolutely spot on.

  • shinewindies on January 9, 2014, 8:09 GMT

    @xtrafalgarx, hmmmm India cant perform away then what about Australia, they have lost last 7 tests in India on the trot, lost 3-0 in England, lets see how they do in SA. Just bcoz they defeated an average team 5-0 mean they are good again, Aus still has a long way to go mate.

  • gsingh7 on January 9, 2014, 8:09 GMT

    to oz faithfuls-- so if aus can win in aus only and get beaten everywhere on foreign soil ,how can u claim aus to be any better than other teams? thing is home teams prepare pitches according to their styles. this tells u why no spinner apart from warne has ever done anything of note for aus. even warne had mediocre record on most spinning tracks of the world - india. tells u how much playing at home have advantage.pak drew series with sa at home but lost away 3-0 with all innings defeats.aus too are on 7-0 loss-win ratio away from home.

  • dunger.bob on January 9, 2014, 8:08 GMT

    @ Just_Sam on (January 9, 2014, 7:46 GMT) : What you said there doesn't sound like us at all. You sure you're not getting us mixed up with England or India. We're not perfect by very long shot but we don't usually make too many excuses when we get slayed. .. There was a bit of rumbling from the media and fans but nothing at all from CA or the players. .. You're right when you say the pitches are what they are and it's better to just get on with it and stop making excuses. .. so, can we just get on with it.

  • xtrafalgarx on January 9, 2014, 7:59 GMT

    @Just_Sam: I know you from the Australian site. You have had it for Australia for a while now and you predicted 5-0 to the English. Now that has come back to bite you, you're making excuses. The fact is we outbowled, outbatted, outfielded,outthought England, and we are going to do it when the Indians come around here again.

  • Meety on January 9, 2014, 7:58 GMT

    Its funny how its very hard to pick an alternate top 7 for Oz's test team team at the moment, but if you do the same exercise for the ODI team - there is an embarrassment of riches. Assuming the top 7 at the moment is 1. Finch, 2. Warner, 3. Watson, 4. Clarke, 5. Bailey, 6. SMarsh, 7. Haddin - an alternate top7 would be 1, Hughes, 2. Wade, 3.Khawaja, 4. Voges, 5. White, 6. Ferguson, 7. Smith. Another alternative is 1. Klinger, 2. Maddinson, 3. Cooper, 4. Lynn, 5. DJ Hussey (remember him?) 6. Quinney, 7. Cutting/Neville. I would of liked to see Hughes in the side as I believe he stands the best chance of imposing himself on World cricket in ODIs in Oz, with the W/Cup around the corner. I don't want Marsh in the side. I would consider with the form Haddin is in, dropping Finch & playing Hadds as an opener! W/Cup - 1. Haddin, 2. Warner, 3. Watson, 4. Clarke, 5. Bailey, 6. Voges, 7. Maxwell/Smith, 8. Starc, 9. Harris, 10. McKay 11. Holland. (No MJ i know but I think Starc is better in ODI)

  • xtrafalgarx on January 9, 2014, 7:56 GMT

    @gsingh7: Hmm? Johnson and Harris have only been both in the side for a few months! Harris wasn't in India and Johnson only played 1 test there, and Johnson wasn't in England. However our pacers out bowled the poms there as well, Harris was the best bowler on either side.

    Just because India can't perform away doesn't mean that you have to try and wipe everyone else under the carpet. Worry about yourselves.

  • Thegimp on January 9, 2014, 7:52 GMT

    @pat_one_back.......I don't know how I ever supported cricket after having to put up with Lillee and Thompson during my formative years and then having to watch Kim Hughes, Alan Border and then Steve Waugh bore me through their defiance of the mind numbing West Indies. How depressing it was watching Ponting take on Akhtar at the WACA. Give me a spinner in the first hour of the first day of a test match any day. I long to see batsmen order a cup of tea, drink it and then get onto the back foot to punch a short ball in front of square. The essence of entertainment right there my friend.

  • stormy16 on January 9, 2014, 7:46 GMT

    Where on earth is Starc and is Cummings just a forgotten man? Aus needs to rest the 3 fast bowlers for sure and give some of the younger guys a chance to improve. In my opinion selection Baily for the Ashes based on one day form in Aus lacked logic and I dont see Aus doing the same thing again. Someone with Shield form should get the nod surely.

  • Just_Sam on January 9, 2014, 7:46 GMT

    To all Oz faithfuls, the truth remains that Ground, Pitch & Weather conditions, Rules Of The Game etc remain same for both teams. The team that makes better use of these conditions and shows better form, comes out winner. Since home teams always have the advantage over visitors they are able to dominate them. The Great Warne, even durng his prime form, struggled in India on helpful pitches because he could not make better use of them than Indian spinners. I made those nasty comments in my earlier posts, just to remind Oz (when they loose on foreign land), that their commentators & scribes keep cribbing and blame Tailor Made Home Pitches, Bad Weather Conditions, DRS, Umpiring, Partisan Crowd, Noise, Water etc (the list is endless) for their loss, rather than appreciate superior performance of the opponent. Right now they are on a high, lets keep our fingers crossed for SAF tour. What I am saying right now may not look reasonable to Oz, but maybe after SAF tour they will agree with me

  • on January 9, 2014, 7:37 GMT

    How can the NSP pick George Bailey in the test side on his ODI form without considering his struggles and modes of dismissal in test and first class cricket? He is an excellent ODI batsmen - no doubt. But selecting him for the Ashes on the back of flat track runs in India with little bounce or sideways movement, while ignoring his previous Shield season averaging 18 with the bat in Australian conditions was ridiculous. Could George Bailey be picked for South Africa's seaming bouncing wickets to face Dale Steyn and Vernon Philander on the back of ODI runs against England? His test form over 5 matches does not warrant that chance. Have the NSP been watching George Bailey's struggles with moving deliveries on or outside off stump during the Ashes or over the previous Shield seasons? He's been given a fair chance and not only not delivered, but looked ordinary. It will be harder again in SA conditions folks. Great guy, great leader, very good ODI batsmen - not a Test batsmen.

  • dunger.bob on January 9, 2014, 7:34 GMT

    Ravi1438: I think I can tell you why Johnson was pulled out of the ODI series in India. He was suddenly needed for the Ashes because of an injury to someone else. He was brought back home to play some 4 day cricket and get into Test nick. .. Not sure it was so brainless considering what he did. .. And yes, before you ask, Test cricket, particularly the Ashes, will just about always have priority over short form cricket in Australia. .. This should give you some idea of how much we value Tests. We were actually shooting for the #1 ODI spot in that India series yet will still pulled Mitch out of it. You'll be very hard pressed to find an Aussie who says we did the wrong thing there.

  • Vishnu27 on January 9, 2014, 7:33 GMT

    Just_Sam: what nonsense. Do you deny the facts that England has altered it's pitches on every occasion Australia has toured since Swann has been in the England test side? If you do, then you are seriously kidding yourself.

    Australian pitches (Google them) have always held unique characteristics. Tell me did any of these pitches play any differently in the series just completed?Adelaide being the exception to this as it is a (largely) new stadium with a drop in pitch. They did not, Just_Sam. Stop making up cynical rubbish & learn to come to terms with England's inability to deal with an invigorated & rampant bowling attack on a variety of surfaces (most of them quick, with bounce).

  • Maelstromoracle on January 9, 2014, 7:32 GMT

    I'm wondering whether South Africa played one of their test on a bit more of a sub-continent type wicket in order to prepare for the tests against Australia. Perhaps they're going to do the English style thing of preparing turners so that they don't have to face the form pacers on any green tops?

  • Chris_P on January 9, 2014, 7:28 GMT

    @Just_Sam. Are you trying to tell me there is no water for pitches over there? None? In a population of 1.2 billion you can't find anyone above pop gun pace? And you won't either as long as you serve up those pitches. The pitches dished up here in tests are mostly the same for grade, certainly in Sydney. Why would anyone try to bowl quick over there?

  • pat_one_back on January 9, 2014, 7:21 GMT

    Don't worry @Just_Sam, based on what just happened in SA, the BCCI are taking their wickets with them now! We won't have to be bored with those aggressive fast bowlers smashing stumps and bones if not careful nor put to sleep by those history defining gutsy hundreds against fired up quicks (yawn) we'll all be content in the constant & predictable entertainment of half a dozen mediocre spinners accompanied by dazzlingly one dimensional batsmen belting around a ball that can't bounce above their waist in anger. Is there a pitch doctor in the house? Quick before Steyn & Johnson bore us to death in SA!

  • gsingh7 on January 9, 2014, 7:17 GMT

    i am with sam here. australia lost 3-0 in england where there was cloud cover and swing in air. check out ratio of pacers wickets to spinners to see that england pacers bowlers outbowled aus pacers. in india where there are traditional spinning tracks for decades now, aus lost 4-0. only decent win for aus in last year was england at home where they make pitches to suit there bowlers harris and johnson.unless this new aus team win series away from home in india and england they will be known as fast track(home track) bullies only.

  • Fareen on January 9, 2014, 7:09 GMT

    It would be a disgrace if Bailey is dropped from the test side after only 1 series where his performance wasn't that poor. It showed how much he had contributed to Australia with his experience alongside the likes of Haddin, and dropping him would just be an example of arrogance from CA. Hopefully he'll be there in SA & perform well to shut the selectors' mouth once and for all.

  • millsy24 on January 9, 2014, 6:53 GMT

    Just_Sam, our pitches are no different to what they have been for the last 10 years, except for the drop in in Adelaide. You want to talk about tailor made pitches? What about the total altering of the English pitches in the 1st leg of this series? All done for Swann. It worked, but totally to the detriment of your batsmen. Look how poorly they played on pitches with some pace and bounce, unlike the almost subcontinental stuff you served up to Australia last year.

  • PFEL on January 9, 2014, 6:51 GMT

    @Steven Andrews, the AB medal is not that important that players are going to go out of their way to avoid resting lol

  • Jeeves_ on January 9, 2014, 6:50 GMT

    I think Australia will be very competitive at home for the World Cup. They have the makings of a very competitive squad, and hard who to leave out (a great position to be in). For England, it's a hard choice who to leave in!!! I think India will be the biggest threat. South Africa should make the semifinals.

  • Biggus on January 9, 2014, 6:41 GMT

    @Just_Sam:- Except that it isn't a valid comparison. If we took the same liberties in preparing pitches that India does you wouldn't be able to tell the pitch from the outfield and we'd 'selectively water' a spot just short of a good length on off stump.

  • on January 9, 2014, 6:35 GMT

    Why isn't callum ferguson in the ODI squad. I don't understand why he is continuously shunned from the national team.

  • VivGilchrist on January 9, 2014, 6:18 GMT

    Totally agree with the 'overrated' Marsh thing. He takes waaaay too long to get set and better players are available. Oh, I forgot ...... his dad played for Australia.

  • Just_Sam on January 9, 2014, 6:02 GMT

    @Chris_p That is what Aus crib about when they are beaten on foreign land. I am just repeating and cribbing like them.

  • Tysonlanka on January 9, 2014, 5:40 GMT

    Guys Aussi pictures are the best for TEST match cricket we all should agree,,, Sri Lankan supporter

  • jonesy2 on January 9, 2014, 5:38 GMT

    cant wait to see NCN and patto share the new ball

  • on January 9, 2014, 5:32 GMT

    some players will miss out on winning the AB medal because they get rested to much and lose valuable points to someone else. If im Johnson or Haddin im saying play me every game i want to wint he AB Medal unless the AB medal means nothing.

  • Ozizim on January 9, 2014, 5:31 GMT

    Bailey for tests in the RSA for sure. It's not like he's a failure. Looking at other options is the same as chopping and changing a team. Settle the team then look for replacements IF one is a total failure in tests a la Raina for India or hopefully Samuels for the Windies. And this coming from someone who does NOT support the Aussies!!!

  • johntycodes on January 9, 2014, 5:20 GMT

    So much for picking the best aussie team all the time. Johnson will have had 7 days rest by the time the first ODI is held. 7 days is a long time why does he need more rest than that.

  • chicko1983 on January 9, 2014, 5:14 GMT

    I forgot Faulkiner instead of Cutting! Warner, Finch, Watson, Clarke, Bailey, Maxwell, Haddin, Falkiner, Johnson, Pattinson, Lyon

  • chicko1983 on January 9, 2014, 5:12 GMT

    2015 World Cup Winning XI: Warner, Finch, Watson, Clarke, Bailey, Maxwell, Haddin, Cutting, Johnson, Pattinson, Lyon

  • on January 9, 2014, 4:55 GMT

    would love to see Lynn given a start in the odi's been scoring plenty of runs in all forms of the game. As for Bailley holding his spot for South Africa, unless their is another player demanding selection I would stick with him, he seem to be a really good team leader but he certainly needs a big score in tests very soon

  • on January 9, 2014, 4:49 GMT

    Oh days!!!! Lyon against Doherty??? Lyon is a world class spinner??, comon guys not better dan Chawla or shud I say dey in same class,??

  • Chris_P on January 9, 2014, 4:40 GMT

    @ Just_Sam "Tayloir made"? You mean the ones they made 150 years ago? Got to enjoy a laugh.. go back to your village, they are missing you!

  • ThinkingCricket on January 9, 2014, 4:33 GMT

    HatsforBats: couldn't agree more about Shaun Marsh. He is an over-rated bat who backs himself too much. He takes way too long to get set, leaving the team in the lurch if he doesn't fire. There are so many that are better than him in Australia that his selection is inexplicable.

  • cricketsubh on January 9, 2014, 4:27 GMT

    My 1st odi team 1.warner2.fhinch3.watson.4.clarke.5.berly.6.maxwell.7.haddin.8.fulkner.9.makey.10.patinson.11.countanal

  • Biggus on January 9, 2014, 4:26 GMT

    @TheBigBoodha:- Still happy to see Pattinson get a run for us before the SA series just so he can get back into international competition. I'd be telling him not to go too hard though if it were up to me

  • Ravi1438 on January 9, 2014, 4:24 GMT

    brainless things can done by only australia...giving opportunity to new comer is good but not in this way..when a person is fit and good in form no need to rest him..same way what they have done in india tour, last match of the series johnson is sent back when they really needed a good blowler. don't understand what logic australia selector work for ??

  • Just_Sam on January 9, 2014, 4:21 GMT

    Auatralia beat England 5-0 on Tailor Made Pitches (which suit their style of play). Now Aus will beat Eng 5-0 in ODI's too on Tailor Made Pitches.

  • on January 9, 2014, 4:07 GMT

    I just hope & pray that the selectors don't make the same mistake again - by selecting George Bailey in the Test team to SA - he is clearly a 2nd rate 1st Class player.

  • class9ryan on January 9, 2014, 4:04 GMT

    Australia will have to decide whether they go with Doherty or go with 4 seamers. I hope Clint McKay is in some form because last few games have been terrible for him. Australia will have a sweet headache having 4 openers of which Watson will shift at no3 but Warner-Finch pair has been terrible in the past T20s and ODIs.

  • HatsforBats on January 9, 2014, 3:45 GMT

    Quite ridiculous using odi form to select the test team, but I'm now used to not understanding our selection policies. No doubt about Bailey's spot in colours though, he's been remarkable. Can we please drop the Marsh project, there's plenty of good short format batsmen in the country. Chris Lynn anybody?

  • TheBigBoodha on January 9, 2014, 3:34 GMT

    Batting looks formidable, but bowling a little weaker - the opposite of the test series. But Doherty is our best ODI spinner. I have no idea why people question his inclusion. Tis is not test cricket. He got hit in the T20 WC semi, but other than that he has always been pretty good. People only ever seem to remember the worst moments of his career. Actually, Nathan Lyon is a very good ODI bowler, but I think they have wanted him to keep developing variations in the longer format - and that has paid off.

    Pattinson is not much of an ODI bowler, at least not from what I've seen of him. Maybe he has improved. Lacks variation, and flat ODI tracks limit his hit-the-deck style.

  • Shah343 on January 9, 2014, 3:20 GMT

    Good! now England wont be whitewashed in the ODI's!, but i cant imagine england winning the series.

  • Shah343 on January 9, 2014, 3:20 GMT

    Good! now England wont be whitewashed in the ODI's!, but i cant imagine england winning the series.

  • TheBigBoodha on January 9, 2014, 3:34 GMT

    Batting looks formidable, but bowling a little weaker - the opposite of the test series. But Doherty is our best ODI spinner. I have no idea why people question his inclusion. Tis is not test cricket. He got hit in the T20 WC semi, but other than that he has always been pretty good. People only ever seem to remember the worst moments of his career. Actually, Nathan Lyon is a very good ODI bowler, but I think they have wanted him to keep developing variations in the longer format - and that has paid off.

    Pattinson is not much of an ODI bowler, at least not from what I've seen of him. Maybe he has improved. Lacks variation, and flat ODI tracks limit his hit-the-deck style.

  • HatsforBats on January 9, 2014, 3:45 GMT

    Quite ridiculous using odi form to select the test team, but I'm now used to not understanding our selection policies. No doubt about Bailey's spot in colours though, he's been remarkable. Can we please drop the Marsh project, there's plenty of good short format batsmen in the country. Chris Lynn anybody?

  • class9ryan on January 9, 2014, 4:04 GMT

    Australia will have to decide whether they go with Doherty or go with 4 seamers. I hope Clint McKay is in some form because last few games have been terrible for him. Australia will have a sweet headache having 4 openers of which Watson will shift at no3 but Warner-Finch pair has been terrible in the past T20s and ODIs.

  • on January 9, 2014, 4:07 GMT

    I just hope & pray that the selectors don't make the same mistake again - by selecting George Bailey in the Test team to SA - he is clearly a 2nd rate 1st Class player.

  • Just_Sam on January 9, 2014, 4:21 GMT

    Auatralia beat England 5-0 on Tailor Made Pitches (which suit their style of play). Now Aus will beat Eng 5-0 in ODI's too on Tailor Made Pitches.

  • Ravi1438 on January 9, 2014, 4:24 GMT

    brainless things can done by only australia...giving opportunity to new comer is good but not in this way..when a person is fit and good in form no need to rest him..same way what they have done in india tour, last match of the series johnson is sent back when they really needed a good blowler. don't understand what logic australia selector work for ??

  • Biggus on January 9, 2014, 4:26 GMT

    @TheBigBoodha:- Still happy to see Pattinson get a run for us before the SA series just so he can get back into international competition. I'd be telling him not to go too hard though if it were up to me

  • cricketsubh on January 9, 2014, 4:27 GMT

    My 1st odi team 1.warner2.fhinch3.watson.4.clarke.5.berly.6.maxwell.7.haddin.8.fulkner.9.makey.10.patinson.11.countanal

  • ThinkingCricket on January 9, 2014, 4:33 GMT

    HatsforBats: couldn't agree more about Shaun Marsh. He is an over-rated bat who backs himself too much. He takes way too long to get set, leaving the team in the lurch if he doesn't fire. There are so many that are better than him in Australia that his selection is inexplicable.