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White to replace McGain

Cameron White, the Victoria all-rounder, who recently led Australia A in a one-day tri-series in India, will replace the injured Bryce McGain for the four-Test series beginning on October 9, reports Anand Vasu.

cricket Updated: Oct 05, 2008 00:08 IST
Anand Vasu

Cameron White, the Victoria all-rounder, who recently led Australia A in a one-day tri-series in India, will replace the injured Bryce McGain for the four-Test series beginning on October 9. Australia's selectors decided that Beau Casson, who played his maiden Test in June this year, is not among the three best spinners in the country.

With McGain injured and Jason Krejza taking a pounding, Australia were in serious strife when it came to their spin department, and Andrew Hilditch, the chairman of selectors, hoped White could do a job for them. "McGain's long-term unavailability due to a shoulder injury gives his fellow Victorian right arm leg-spinner Cameron White an opportunity to join the Australian Test squad in India," said Hilditch.

"We feel Cameron's right-arm leg spin and experience in Indian conditions is the correct option and will provide a good balance to our slow bowling attack."

Australia might be struggling when it comes to the actual art of spin bowling on the field, but they certainly aren't found wanting when it comes to putting a positive spin on things. Don't miss how Hilditch underscores the fact that White is a "right-arm" leg-spinner, a bit unnecessary since left arm wrist bowlers are never referred to as leg-spinners, but instead are called chinaman or left-arm unorthodox. If Casson heard this explanation he should allow himself a quiet chuckle.

"Cameron's bowling has continued to improve over the past year at inter-state level and his powerful batting adds extra depth and versatility to the squad," Hilditch, who arrived in Hyderabad on Friday, added. What Hilditch did not talk about was White's domestic first-class record last season — nine matches, 84 overs bowled, 6 wickets at an average of 47 and a best of 2 for 41. Brad White, who led Victoria last season, thought so highly of his leg-breaks that he bowled himself for an average of only 9.3 overs per first-class match.

In all this, Peter Siddle, the medium-pacer, must be fancying his chances, as Australia could well go into a Test with no specialist spinners and use Michael Clarke's left-arm orthodox and Simon Katich's left-arm wrist spin to fill in.