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There Are Plenty of Opportunities in Australian Cricket at the Moment: Mitchell Marsh

Cricketnext Staff | Updated: September 1, 2018, 6:41 PM IST
There Are Plenty of Opportunities in Australian Cricket at the Moment: Mitchell Marsh

File image of Australia cricketer Mitchell Marsh. (Getty Images)

Australia A's two four-day games against India A, starting from Sunday, will serve as a perfect rostrum for the national selectors to look for possible candidates for forthcoming Pakistan Test series.

Australia will play two Tests and three Twenty20 Internationals in UAE in October, and with selectors set to announce the squad for five-day format at the conclusion of the 'A' series, the Test aspirants will be looking to pounce on every possible opportunity in the next 10 days.

Australia A captain Mitchell Marsh, who is making a comeback after undergoing ankle surgery in April, said all his players are hungry to perform and would want to win this series before thinking about the selections. "There's a great vibe around this group," said Marsh ahead of the first match in Bangalore. "You get a real sense everyone is really hungry to perform.

"There's plenty of opportunities in Australian cricket at the moment and I think as a team we've got a real focus that we want to win this little mini-series and hopefully start something special as a group."

He added: "Being an Australia A series, a lot of time you can solely focus on yourself and wanting to score runs, but ultimately we want to create a culture in that team certainly that we want to come here and play to win.

"I'm the captain of this team and I'll be doing my best to make sure that happens. For me, I obviously want to spend some time in the middle with the bat but we want to come here and win and win for Australia."

While Marsh didn't reveal the playing XI, he did confirm Matt Renshaw, who suffered a hamstring injury in the quadrangular series, is out of contention, at least for the first fixture.

The 26-year-old all-rounder said he will most likely bowl in the second match and that will boost his confidence ahead of the UAE tour. "I'm back pretty much blowing full-tilt now," he said.

"Hopefully I'll bowl a few overs in the second four-day game here. It's all progressed really well. I've had no setbacks throughout the whole injury process so I'm really rapt."

Tim Paine, who was appointed as the captain after the Cape Town ball-tampering fiasco, have failed to achieve desired results. However, Paine is expected to lead the side for the time being, but the role of his deputy is still up for grab. And the likes of Josh Hazlewood and Nathan Lyon have already declared their interests of becoming the vice-captain.

When asked about if he too wants to throw his hat in the ring, Marsh said: "I've had a little bit of experience captaining Western Australia back home. It's not something I tend to think about too deeply.

"If the opportunity arose I'd grab it with both hands but ultimately that's out of my hands at the moment and I'll just be the best captain I can be here.

"I'm really looking forward to captaining in these conditions, which is something I don't experience much playing at the WACA every second week and in Australia. It's going to be a whole new experience for me and something I'm really looking forward to."
First Published: September 1, 2018, 6:41 PM IST

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