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Shaun Marsh an Important Part of Australian Team: Langer

Cricketnext Staff | Updated: March 15, 2019, 12:49 PM IST
Shaun Marsh an Important Part of Australian Team: Langer

Source: AP

Fantastic performances from the likes of Usman Khawaja, Peter Handscomb and Ashton Turner in India, and the impending returns of David Warner and Steve Smith from suspension, has meant a proven performer like Shaun Marsh is far from certain of being named in Australia's Cup squad next month.

Marsh, who scored four ODI tons in 2018, is expected to feature in the team that will take on Pakistan in a five-match ODI series in UAE.

"He's too good a player not to," coach Justin Langer said when asked if Marsh would get a chance in the UAE.

"He's been our most successful ODI player in the last 12 months, probably longer.

"It was tough (in India) that he'd come back in off the back of a hamstring injury ... he missed out a few times but he's a gun player, a really important part of the team."

Langer is feeling the stress as he attempts to finalise the World Cup squad and the series win in India has not helped him or the selectors.

It’s not just the problems in picking the batsmen, but there is uncertainty about which bowlers to pick.

Mitchell Starc and Josh Hazlewood are recovering from injuries, with the latter in some doubt for the start of the tournament.

The team management are also undecided on whether to include both Adam Zampa and Nathan Lyon in the squad.

"I sat down in my bed last night and I tried to go through my journal, (write down) possible World Cup sides, Australia A sides and Ashes sides," Langer said prior to the squad's flight from Delhi to Dubai.

"I did that at about 11.30pm. I woke up at about 3.30am and my mind was still ticking. It's really hard.

"There will be 19 or 20 guys who deserve to be in the World Cup squad ... we've got a few selection headaches.

"That's a great problem to have. That's been the cornerstone of Australian cricket for a long time, intense competition."

The likes of Zampa, Khawaja, Marcus Stoinis, Ashton Turner, Pat Cummins and Alex Carey did well in India and made their case for selection.

Ricky Ponting, Langer and Trevor Hohns have all backed Aaron Finch’s captaincy, but he will look to get his batting going before the World Cup.

Langer praised the incumbent 15-man squad, which became the first Australian outfit to battle back from 2-0 down to win a five-match ODI series against India, for not thinking about World Cup selection.

"It's been one of our philosophies," he said.

"It's a real danger time ... if you put the emphasis on yourself, you tend to put too much pressure on and you don't go well. We don't go well."
First Published: March 15, 2019, 12:33 PM IST

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