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Australian test selection 2020/21

Nintendo

State 12th Man
1.Maddison
2.Hughes
3.S Marsh (*)
4.Pucovski
5.Kpat
6.Green
7.Inglis (+)
8.Neser 1
9.J Richardson 2
10.Gannon 3
11.Swepson
 

Dan

Global Moderator
Eh, Meredith's a fair enough Aus A pick whereas Gannon wouldn't be imo. Australia A XIs aren't supposed to be a shadow Test team if the first XI all get COVID tomorrow. They're development XIs aimed at seeing if prospects can translate their talent to higher levels and to see if people with decent Shield records can actually step up against teams that don't have players that are barely FC standard to bully.

Australia A games are an information-gathering exercise. There's interesting info to be gained from the likes of Meredith and Green and Pucovski in the way that there isn't for a Marsh or a Gannon.

For example, here's an attempt at playing selector if I was told to pick a new Test XI for tomorrow vs picking a team for a match against the England Lions (assuming everyone is fit).
Everyone got COVID XILions Tour XI
  1. Bancroft
  2. Harris
  3. Khawaja
  4. Marsh
  5. Patterson
  6. Finch
  7. Carey
  8. Neser
  9. Pattinson
  10. Richardson
  11. Swepson
  1. Bancroft / Harris
  2. Hughes
  3. Maddinson
  4. Patterson
  5. Pucovski
  6. Green
  7. Carey
  8. Neser
  9. Richardson
  10. Swepson
  11. Meredith / Conway
 

Nintendo

State 12th Man
An
Surely Hughes has missed his window. Almost 32 and averaging just under 40 in FC does not leap frog a lot of younger openers
He's had 2 good first class season's in a row now, and a lot of the young options have been tried and failed already (Renshaw, Bangers, Harris.) Or are too raw/inconsistent (Street, weatherly.) Even of he's 32 he seems like the best option outside maddo for an A team.
 

Nintendo

State 12th Man
Eh, Meredith's a fair enough Aus A pick whereas Gannon wouldn't be imo. Australia A XIs aren't supposed to be a shadow Test team if the first XI all get COVID tomorrow. They're development XIs aimed at seeing if prospects can translate their talent to higher levels and to see if people with decent Shield records can actually step up against teams that don't have players that are barely FC standard to bully.

Australia A games are an information-gathering exercise. There's interesting info to be gained from the likes of Meredith and Green and Pucovski in the way that there isn't for a Marsh or a Gannon.

For example, here's an attempt at playing selector if I was told to pick a new Test XI for tomorrow vs picking a team for a match against the England Lions (assuming everyone is fit).
Everyone got COVID XILions Tour XI
  1. Bancroft
  2. Harris
  3. Khawaja
  4. Marsh
  5. Patterson
  6. Finch
  7. Carey
  8. Neser
  9. Pattinson
  10. Richardson
  11. Swepson
  1. Bancroft / Harris
  2. Hughes
  3. Maddinson
  4. Patterson
  5. Pucovski
  6. Green
  7. Carey
  8. Neser
  9. Richardson
  10. Swepson
  11. Meredith / Conway
I just don't think Meredith has done well enough at first class level to deserve to be in a team designed to test if players are ready for the step up to test, while gannon was the highest wicket taker last shield season. He's earned the right to be in the A team, action withholding
 

aussie tragic

International Vice-Captain
Everyone got COVID XILions Tour XI
  1. Bancroft
  2. Harris
  3. Khawaja
  4. Marsh
  5. Patterson
  6. Finch
  7. Carey
  8. Neser
  9. Pattinson
  10. Richardson
  11. Swepson
  1. Bancroft / Harris
  2. Hughes
  3. Maddinson
  4. Patterson
  5. Pucovski
  6. Green
  7. Carey
  8. Neser
  9. Richardson
  10. Swepson
  11. Meredith / Conway
Pattinson is the incumbent having played the last 2 tests for Australia, so not sure why this Victorian would escape Covid from the first XI and be in the Covid free XI lol
 
Last edited:

TheJediBrah

Hall of Fame Member
Australia A XIs aren't supposed to be a shadow Test team if the first XI all get COVID tomorrow. They're development XIs aimed at seeing if prospects can translate their talent to higher levels and to see if people with decent Shield records can actually step up against teams that don't have players that are barely FC standard to bully.
I'm trying to remember when this changed, probably around 2010-ish I think. Prior to that A teams were genuinely just a second XI. Wasn't just Aus, happened about the same time they started calling England A the England Lions IIRC.
 

aussie tragic

International Vice-Captain
I thought this Aussie A development/potential teams was a Greg Chappell thing. Since he left and Langer took over as coach I thought Aussie A side would be more second XI (Maxwell not being selected for A tour in India last year aside)
 

TheJediBrah

Hall of Fame Member
You might be right. I was talking as a generalisation and trends rather than hard and fast rules but there was definitely a period there where it changed noticeably. Pre-2010 they had that Aus A 4-day game every year against the touring side, televised on 9, and it was a great watch. Genuinely Test quality Aus-A side most of the time and they usually won.

Then about the same time they started those Top-end quadrangular A-team tournaments, they started picking young players for Australia A who weren't anywhere close to selection as a development exercise. Probably evened out to a bit of both these days.
 

Dan

Global Moderator
I think it's a bit of a myth tbh. Development XIs at the time always look more like genuine second XIs in hindsight because the players usually developed into something. If you look at most Australia A scorecards, I think you'll see the following things:
  • Big name cricketers about two years before they secured their Test spot / became properly good at internationals
  • Solid Shield cricketers in their late-20s at about the time they'd peaked / were unlucky not to break in
  • Someone in their late 20s who's recently dumped and trying to earn their way back
The occasional Greg-Blewett-in-Adelaide aside, those Australia A sides also weren't turning out players in their 30s with lots of internationals behind them who'd be up for an emergency recall if the entire Test team disappeared on a flight leaving Bermuda.

Like, case in point, MacGill was clearly the #2 spinner when Warne got banned but a young Hauritz was the Australia A incumbent. There was no information to be gained by putting MacGill out there, but there was a lot that could be learned from seeing Hauritz play against the touring England side in 2002/03.

There's no point putting a Marsh or Khawaja into the Australia A side, for example, unless there's literally no other cricket being played and you need them on standby. They're clearly in Australia's theoretical best Second XI, but you can learn more for the future by seeing Pucovski or Green. I'm probably being a bit harsh on Gannon, but imo there's more upside to picking Meredith and learning he's 2020's Denis Hickey when he faces people who can actually bat, than there is in picking Cameron Gannon and learning that he's still Cameron Gannon.
 

TheJediBrah

Hall of Fame Member
Like, case in point, MacGill was clearly the #2 spinner when Warne got banned but a young Hauritz was the Australia A incumbent. There was no information to be gained by putting MacGill out there, but there was a lot that could be learned from seeing Hauritz play against the touring England side in 2002/03.
That's a good example, but it's one that goes against the trend I mentioned. MacGill was obviously ahead of Hauritz but Hauritz wasn't far off, he'd already made his international debut by then and was probably 3rd in line behind MacGill. He wasn't just a youngester plucked out of nowhere for an A game. Look at the rest of the team: Elliott, Maher, Love, Blewett, Clarke, North, Haddin, Noffke, Clark, Williams. It was pretty much a genuine 2nd XI.
 

stephen

Hall of Fame Member
That's a good example, but it's one that goes against the trend I mentioned. MacGill was obviously ahead of Hauritz but Hauritz wasn't far off, he'd already made his international debut by then and was probably 3rd in line behind MacGill. He wasn't just a youngester plucked out of nowhere for an A game. Look at the rest of the team: Elliott, Maher, Love, Blewett, Clarke, North, Haddin, Noffke, Clark, Williams. It was pretty much a genuine 2nd XI.
It's honestly better than some first XIs out there.
 

TheJediBrah

Hall of Fame Member
It's honestly better than some first XIs out there.
It was. The golden era. I actually watched most of that game that Dan mentioned live, I remember thinking Martin Love was batting as good as I'd ever seen anyone bat before in international cricket. Then Michael Vaughan looked even better during the Tests. It may be nostalgia talking but those years were mint.
 

TheJediBrah

Hall of Fame Member
There was also a period, probably right after the Greg Chappell thing, where instead of Australia A they played "Emerging players" teams. One tournament was like "New Zealand A", "South Africa A" v "Australia Emerging Players" and the half the Aus team hadn't even played First-class cricket. Can't remember how long that went for.
 

Burgey

Request Your Custom Title Now!
I think it's a bit of a myth tbh. Development XIs at the time always look more like genuine second XIs in hindsight because the players usually developed into something. If you look at most Australia A scorecards, I think you'll see the following things:
  • Big name cricketers about two years before they secured their Test spot / became properly good at internationals
  • Solid Shield cricketers in their late-20s at about the time they'd peaked / were unlucky not to break in
  • Someone in their late 20s who's recently dumped and trying to earn their way back
The occasional Greg-Blewett-in-Adelaide aside, those Australia A sides also weren't turning out players in their 30s with lots of internationals behind them who'd be up for an emergency recall if the entire Test team disappeared on a flight leaving Bermuda.

Like, case in point, MacGill was clearly the #2 spinner when Warne got banned but a young Hauritz was the Australia A incumbent. There was no information to be gained by putting MacGill out there, but there was a lot that could be learned from seeing Hauritz play against the touring England side in 2002/03.

There's no point putting a Marsh or Khawaja into the Australia A side, for example, unless there's literally no other cricket being played and you need them on standby. They're clearly in Australia's theoretical best Second XI, but you can learn more for the future by seeing Pucovski or Green. I'm probably being a bit harsh on Gannon, but imo there's more upside to picking Meredith and learning he's 2020's Denis Hickey when he faces people who can actually bat, than there is in picking Cameron Gannon and learning that he's still Cameron Gannon.
this post only left Dan with 1.5 minutes out of his allocated 15 for the day
 

Burgey

Request Your Custom Title Now!
The default mod setting should always be to close any thread wher h_hurricane has posted more than thrice.
 

the big bambino

International Captain
Which he then used to close the Jaddu-Warney thread 😂
Which is a pity as I saw Migara say Jaddu would have a better away record if he bowled to the same English teams Warne did. First up I'm not sure Jaddu's English opponents were any better. Also Murali bowled to much the same English batsmen as Warne. Then when you see the main Indian bowlers' averages v the same English batsmen you get Kumble at 28, which is very good but 5 points higher than Warne and, from memory, Harby 33, Srinath 38 and Z 43, who were all better bowlers than Jaddu, you'd have to say he probably wouldn't.
 

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