well no. perhaps a grammatical error there on my part (although I wouldn't have been taking my eyes of the ball if bounced in my first over of test cricket)
with more injury/replacement news its even more drumming home how inexperienced the current player pool is and how directionless the selections have been.
It kinda reminds me of the "if you own a bat you will get a chance" selection policy that England employed in 1989 Ashes.
In the last 12 months how many players have debuted in tests for Oz?
Without actually checking I'll try and reel them off:
Thats 10 and probably forgot some. Oh for the good old days of settled teams and quality players.
Haddin was essential - Gilly retired and we needed a wicket-keeper. Since he started, Haddin has been a quality player who has retained his spot (so settled?)
Siddle won selection in India ahead of Bollinger when picked to replace the injured Stuart Clark. He was dropped in favour of Clarke for the NZ series, but since then has retained his spot - and already owns a test bowling average of 28, despite only having played tests against the other 2 top nations in the world (SAf and India). Quality player who looks settled in the lineup.
Bollinger, who was 'next in line' replaced Lee, who got injured - and was solid in his debut. Unfortunately Bollinger's injury opened the door for Hilfenhaus to make his debut.
Hughes was clearly picked with an eye to the long term following the retirement of Hayden - similar to Haddin, good choice which looks to be a quality and settled move.
McDonald and North are vying for the 'all-rounder' position in the lineup due to the unavailability of Watson (and Symonds soiling himself). Not much they could do on that front either.
Casson was picked as a spinner for the West Indies, wasn't inspirational, and made way for White in India, who made way for Krejza (!) who in turn made way for Hauritz, who is now behind McGain in the pecking order.
Perhaps McGain was the man who should have been selected all along - it's clear that on the spin front the selectors have made some serious errors - Krejza and Hauritz are barely shield quality spinners, while White doesn't even bowl....
So. while I'd agree that a lot of players have debuted, it's not like the selectors were chopping and changing all the time - on the whole they've taken the long term approach - the main area of contention is the spinner spot, which was resolved in the latest test by not picking one at all (perhaps what should have been done all along if no quality wicket taker was available?).
But not part of a 4-man attack, that was madness & as we both agree, that selectorial blunder was avoided for obvious reasons.
So McDonald must be dropped, especially if the extreme happens & Siddle & Hilfenhaus aren't fit for the second test.
Although not a fan of Bracks as a test bowler. Surely with the bowling resources stretched to the limit because of injuries, he should have been called up ahead of Geeves at least.
These selectors *sighs*
He's a better bowler than Geeves in the longer period of the game.
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