Cameron Green at seven, Mitch Marsh at eight and Alex Carey at nine.
These are names commonly seen higher in any batting line-up, but Chris Rogers believes “something radical” in the selection will be needed throughout 2022 if Australia wants to build on their momentum from a successful Ashes campaign .
“You can look at it with some fresh eyes, a bit of a fresh sight in reality, the side you might end up with in the ashes is not necessarily the side you want to choose under those conditions,” the former Australian opener, who became Victorian coach. Rogers told foxsports.com.au.
Following a quiet test calendar since the advent of Covid-19, which has meant Australia have not played an away test in two years, Pat Cummins’ men will tour the subcontinent on three separate occasions this year.
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Although it is believed that Pakistan will provide assistance to the fast ones, the expectation is that their trips to Sri Lanka and India over the next year will be dominated by spin bowling.
Of the team that finished Ashes in Hobart, only Steve Smith has scored a century in India.
The only other player to reach three figures in the country is Glenn Maxwell, who played the last of his seven tests in their seven-wicket victory over Bangladesh in 2017. Earlier that year, Maxwell scored 104 in their draw against India – one of The only two matches Australia have not lost in India since 2004.
Australia has regularly played two spinners on Indian and Sri Lankan soil – countries they have only won two tests in since their historic series victories in 2004 under Ricky Ponting and Adam Gilchrist – but the emergence of all-rounder Cameron Green could enable tourists to stay creative with their XI.
Green, 22, took 13 wickets at 15.76 to finish with the sixth most wickets during the five match test series.
Still, the talented fast hit rate of 37.2 was only improved by Pat Cummins (36.1) and Scott Boland (27).
His dynamic bowling, where he is able to hit the mid-140s, could be used instead of playing a specialist fast, thereby strengthening batting.
What’s more, Rogers believes Australia could even use Mitch Marsh, who averages 38.64 with the ball and took a five-wicket move in his last Test against England in 2019, along with Green and Cummins in their attack for to strike as deep in order as possible.
“It will be very different conditions, and whether you need three fast ones at all (is doubtful),” Rogers said.
“You could potentially even go, and it might not be in Pakistan, but you could go to Cummins, Green and even Mitch Marsh, and you could do something radical.”
Rogers, who averaged 42.87 in Test cricket and beat five centuries, never played a Test in India.
But the former left-handed opener played two Tests against Pakistan in the UAE, but failed to record half a century.
A self-critical Rogers said he would not have chosen himself to open batting if he were to pick a team and believes it is crucial to have an attacking mindset at the top of the row to succeed during the spin- friendly conditions.
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For that reason, Rogers believes Maxwell, who exploded back into the hearts and minds of Australians earlier this week by hitting the highest score ever in Big Bash’s history, could play a role in various positions across the team, including at the top of the ranks . – the position in which he made his test debut in 2014.
“The only other thing is that I think the best time to hit is against the new ball and that may be the best time to score, so that would be something they need to be aware of,” he said. he.
“You can match (David) Warner with someone who’s just as aggressive and see if you can get the races fast and on the board. Even Glenn Maxwell at the top would be an idea.
“I’m not saying that’s how they should go, but it’s an option worth considering, given the percentage of overs that will be thrown by the spin, and that spin will also open the bowling alley. share.
“I know from my own experience that I probably was not the right option in my time when I opened batting in the UAE against Pakistan.
“I think Pakistan will be different, they have a group of fast bowlers, that could be interesting. But in the other two tournaments I can imagine they will show up and it’s going to spin on day one, so it’s a very, very different scenario than the one they just played against. ”
The prospect of playing both Marsh and Green in your XI would allow Australia to strike down to No. 9, where Cummins and Nathan Lyon are not slipping with the bat either.
It would allow Maxwell to help Lyon with spin bowling, while Marnus Labuschagne and Steve Smith could offer effective play-spin.
On the slow, low courses of India, Labuschagne, who has 12 wickets at 45 but took seven wickets at 22.42 with his faster leg-spinners, could prove effective and therefore allow Australia to play nine batsmen.
Rogers believes it is important to have an offensive mindset under Indian conditions, which is a strength of Maxwell and Marsh.
“You will certainly be able to rely on your defense, but you also need to be able to score out of good bowling,” he said.
“If you can not find ways to score, you feel like a sitting duck.
“The players who have the power and can put some pressure on the spin bowlers often succeed.
“The other thing I think about them both is that they provide opportunities with the ball and they hit deep.
“I wanted to think about how you can set your team up so you can hit pretty deep because it’s going to be very difficult to get to races and you need as many races as possible.”
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Neither Maxwell nor Marsh has played much red ball cricket in recent years.
Maxwell has hardly played a game due to his one-day commitments, but scored half a century in his last first-round pick, hitting 707 runs at 50.50 in his final full season of 2017-18.
Either way, Rogers does not think it matters how much red ball cricket Maxwell has played, and insists that the conditions in Sheffield Shield cricket are markedly different from those found in test cricket, especially in India.
“You’re collecting what’s going on in a Sheffield Shield game, it does not really point to what’s going to happen in a test match under these conditions, because the wickets here have been suitable for fast bowling while it’s going to spin over there. , “Rogers said.
“I understand the concept of stroke time and all that sort of thing, but should you pick Glenn Maxwell on the back of a green MCG track to know if he will be able to play a test match in Asia?”
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Maxwell is due to get married during Australia’s three Test tour of Pakistan in March, which could put his place in the squad in doubt.
But the 33-year-old keeps hoping to perform in the baggy green later this year.
“It’s certainly realistic,” Maxwell said in early December.
“I think I’m probably playing as well as I ever did at the moment.
“I feel really good about my game. I have been able to work with different techniques for different formats, which has really helped in the future.
“I’ve been in constant contact with selectors and they’ve been really aware that if opportunities arise then I’m ready for the red ball.”