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Also as a New Zealander I only pick Test teams based on ODI performances.
Wouldn't mind terribly if Ferguson got picked, as long as it wasn't over Khawaja; Usman has played 22 FC games to Ferguson's 48, and already has more hundreds than him, including a (very recent) double. He has to be next in line.
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1. I don't believe Hauritz has what it takes to be a legitimate threat against top order batsman (which is what would be required if he was to be in the side). If he is just in the team to to add variety and conserve runs etc. I think North, Clarke and Katich can do that job just fine (as the test series in India proved). Furthermore, given the good fast bowling line up (Johnson, Bollinger, Hilfenhaus) who will probably thrive in Gabba conditions, Hauritz could easily be targeted as the weak link.
2. I don't think Watson should be used much as a main bowler in this series. He is one of our best batsmen and should focus most of his attention of that job to boost our vunerable batting line-up. Therefore, if Watson isn't used much as bowler, a 4th fast bowler (not including Watson) would be useful to manage the load (especially as though Bollinger and Hilf have had injuries recently) and add more variety to the attack.
3. Seeing as though Johnson is completely erratic, it is always useful to have an extra option. If the bad Johnson decides to turn up, that leaves the side with only Bollinger and Hilf to rely on.
4. If the 4th fast bowler was a debutant, as I said before, that could potentially be a good weapon against England who know all about Hauritz, but would know little about the new bowler. I think Hauritz would be a source of comfort for England more than anything. I also disagree that the 4th bowler would be the 5th best in the team. Both Siddle and Harris look just as good as any of the current line up. And e.g. Copeland or Cameron could be better - who knows. You could argue that the 4th bowler might fail, and you'd have to rely on the other 3. However, the exact same argument could be made with Hauritz. There is nothing much to suggest he will succeed in Aus either.
All that being said though, it seems at this stage Hauritz playing is very likely (as per Chappell's comments). I just really don't like the look of the team with Hauritz in it though, especially if North and Hussey are retained. Because then the team is practically identical to the one that toured England - one England would know they can beat, and are highly familiar with. I feel this Ashes series should be the dawn of a new era for Australian cricket, not just a continuation of the same old mediocrity.
There are other batsmen too that got their foot in the door through the ODI side: Mark Waugh, Darren Lehmann, Mike Hussey - all played ODIs for 2-3 years before Test debuts. Of course those guys had superior FC records to Ferguson.
It's hard to fault Ferguson on his FC record because he's barely had the chance to right that record in the last 2 years. So you are really arguing that he's wasn't good enough 2 years ago, so therefore he's not good enough now. But really - stuff from 2 years ago shouldn't be relevant today eg. Shane Watson went belly up as an opener for QLD 2 years ago - does that mean he shouldn't be picked as an opener today? No. That's an easy arguement though because Watson's had the chance to prove that he can open. So really, the fairest thing for Ferguson is to get him more cricket. That way he can PROVE if his FC record is misleading or not. But I can understand if the selectors do go for him - they are trusting their eyes, rather than some outdated stats.
Hey Australia, have you gone soft?
That's the impression I'm getting lately. Their predicament is partially selector-engineered which is, well, hilarious from an Englishman's perspective because for so long it has been us who couldn't organise ourselves out of a paper bag. But where has the decisiveness gone? The confidence in a young tyro to step up and give us a kick in the nads? Where's the grit? The shoe seems to be on the other foot. Now we're the ones with the settled side, the positive, forward-thinking board and the ability, I think, to terrorise the old enemy for a while. And I've never known an Australian to chuck a hissy fit under the pressure of the big stage as Johnson did in the Ashes last year. Lost your hard edge lads?
Im really not sure why Hauritz is being considered for Brisbane given the reports on what the pitch is going to play like. Hauritz outside of Sydney/Adelaide is a real recipe for disaster. 4 quicks is the way to go IMO.
Tendulkar = the most overated player EVER!!
Beckham = the most overated footballer EVER!!
Vassell = the biggest disgrace since rikki clarke!!
I think the curators will actually be under enormous pressure from the State asssociations to not have the game fizzle out within three days - given the number of prepurchased tickets for this Ashes series, and the stream of gold that will flow into the coffers.
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