Josh Inglis could still wear the gloves in this summer’s Ashes series, with at least one Australian pick interested in the English-born Western Australian to replace Tim Paine.
News Corp reports that the talented 26-year-old, who has impressed cricket greats Ricky Ponting and Shane Warne, has also caught the eye of voters.
For Inglis, it may be a matter of the right place, the right time, and selectors are heavily emphasizing picking him up in front of Paine’s apparent heir Alex Carey, Herald Sun. reports.
If he had to wear the gloves for the opening test at The Gabba on December 8, it would be a fantastic increase for the right-handed player who supported England until recently.
“It’s hard to support another country if you were not born there,” Inglis told the British Daily Mail in 2017 when he moved with his family to Australia six weeks before his 15th birthday.
Australia’s selectors appointed just one wicket-keeper in their 15-man squad earlier this month, with both Carey and Inglis named in an Australian A squad, indicating that both were in a highly controversial race to become Paine’s deputy.
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Carey, 30, led Australia to an ODI series victory over the West Indies over the winter, but the cunning left-handed player failed to set the world on fire in the T20 version of the game and was dropped for Inglis for the recent successful T20 World Cup campaign.
Inglis did not play a match in which former three-format wicket-keeper Matthew Wade enjoyed a series to remember, but that meant he spent time with Australian coach Justin Langer, who is one of three voters included George Bailey and the new voice Tony Dodemaide.
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News Corp reports new skipper Pat Cummins, who became Australia’s 47th captain on Friday, will be asked for his opinion as well as vice-captain Steve Smith and other senior members. But their opinions are more likely to be judged on teammates than an analysis of playing ability.
Nor has Carey, a man well-liked and regarded as the “charming prince” of Australian cricket, made a serious impression during the early rounds of this season’s Sheffield Shield.
Carey has an average of 21.8 this season and has passed 10 on three out of six strokes, including a top score of 66.
His season stats are well below his career record, where he averages 34.7 and has five centuries to his name.
Inglis has only played one Shield match this season, scoring 28 and 13 before joining the T20 squad in the UAE. He is on average 34 years old and has three centuries.
Although Ponting and Warne both invited Inglis to join Australia’s T20 team, former goalkeepers Adam Gilchrist and Ian Healy have both spoken passionately about Carey and his work behind the stumps.
Australia’s leading candidates to replace Paine at the Ashes … and all are flawed
Even before Paine’s decision to step down from the game, Australian voters had recognized the need to prepare for his successor and hinted that Carey was the frontrunner.
“The map of Tim’s role and age, it’s not a conversation that has not come up in the past,” Bailey told The Australian’s Cricket Et Cetera podcast.
“Apart from Tim’s position, it’s the same thing we do about David Warner at the age he’s at the top of the ranks, or the three fast bowlers we’ve been addicted to. Nathan Lyon has been a constant conversation about, how important he has been to the team.They are all at an age where one has to be a little bit prepared.
“We have named Alex Carey on the Australian A-team, but at the moment in terms of wicketkeepers, we are in a reasonably strong position between Alex Carey, Josh Inglis, Jimmy Pierson. I also saw Josh Philippe strike beautifully yesterday. It would would be nice if we could play with four or five wicketkeepers. “
DO IT FOR FATHER: A SUMMER HEARTWORK
Mitchell Starc carried a weight on his shoulders last summer.
As critics continued to line up to take a trip to him, Starc faced a terrible decision.
Forced to be in a Covid bubble, the left-handed fast was unable to be with his family after his father, Paul, was diagnosed with cancer.
Starc wanted to be with his family, but his father’s last wish was that his son keep steaming in and hitting the fold.
On the eve of the ashes, Starc opened up on the difficult summer, impressing his teammates with his brave fight.
“Yeah, it was not very fun,” Starc said Daily Telegraph’s Ben Horne.
“It was hard … but everyone is going through their own thing, so you push.”
His loss was profound.
“Yeah, he was my first coach, so he’s a big part of my career,” Starc says.
“And he’s probably the reason I played cricket last summer to be fair. It was a tough last summer…”
Cummins, who stood shoulder to shoulder with Starc, added: “I really admired Mitchy. I’m really proud of how he played last summer.
“Being able to wake up every morning, in front, do it with a smile on his face and lace up his boots and throw his heart out time and time again, was just an incredible effort and made so many people around him really proud and strong. “