India vs Australia: Shane Warne picks his playing XI of Australia for first Test against India in Adelaide
Who are the openers? Who should bat at No.6? Will it be an all seam attack? These are enough to keep both India and Australia team managements on their toes. The first Test match of the Border-Gavaskar Trophy which will be historic pink ball Test is just four days away and it will not be an overstatement to say that neither India nor Australia are absolutely sure about their playing XI for Thursday.
Tim Paine and the Australian team management’s job was however was made a tad easier by legendary leg-spinner Shane Warne who picked his Australia XI for the first Test starting on December 17 in Adelaide.
Warne on Sunday picked Matthew Wade and Marcus Harris as the opening pair for the first Test against India in the absence of regular opener David Warner and Will Pucovski.
Cricket Australia on Saturday added Harris into the Test squad following confirmation of Warner and Pucovski not being available for selection for Adelaide Test.
Warner had injured his adductor muscle in the field during the second ODI against India at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG), while Pucovski sustained a concussion while batting for Australia A in the tour match against India at Drummoyne Oval last week. Both batsmen will now target a return ahead of the Boxing Day Test.Surprisingly, Warne’s first Test XI did not feature lacklustre batsman Joe Burns, who was seen as one of the openers for the longest format game.
Taking to Twitter Warne wrote, “My test team for Adelaide now that Burns looks horribly out of form and injuries to Warner & young Pucovski. Fingers crossed Green will be ok.”
The veteran leg-spinner also named Shaun Marsh as a replacement for Cameron Green, who suffered a blow on his head during the ongoing practice-game against India. He was substituted by Pat Rowe on the first day of the match.
In the middle-order, Test favourites Marnus Labuschagne and Steve Smith finds a place along with Travis Head and skipper Tim Paine. Whereas the bowling department will be headed by experienced pacer Mitchell Starc supported by the duo of Pat Cummins and Josh Hazlewood.
Nathan Lyon is the only spinner to find a place in Warner’s playing XI for the historic first-ever day-night Test match between Australia and India.
Warne’s Australia XI: Matthew Wade, Marcus Harris, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Cameron Green, Tim Paine (c), Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood, Shaun Marsh (on standby if Green is out).
(With ANI inputs)