Justin Langer keeping Shaun Marsh in contention: The Australian head coach has spoken against age being a barrier for the veteran batsman.
As he should be considering the level of conundrum, Australia head coach Justin Langer is hell-bent on getting his team’s opening combination right for the forthcoming first Test against India in Adelaide.
“You can imagine I’m very passionate about getting the opening partnership right. I know how important it is to a successful team. We’ll be working through that and hopefully get the pieces of the jigsaw puzzle right for the first Test match and beyond next week,” Langer was quoted as saying by 7 NEWS on Friday.
Following Joe Burns’ lean patch and injuries to David Warner and Will Pucovski, Australia’s opening pair has attracted multiple opinions. While Marcus Harris appears to be the front-runner to receive a comeback, the likes of veteran batsmen such as Shaun Marsh and Usman Khawaja are also in the run to play a Test after 23 and 16 months respectively.
How quickly things change. It’s now possible none of Warner, Burns or Pucovski will play the first Test.#AUSvIND
— Greg Baum (@GregBaum) December 8, 2020
Justin Langer keeping Shaun Marsh in contention for Adelaide Test
Having scored 485 runs in four Sheffield Shield matches at an average of 97 including three centuries and a half-century, Marsh is the second-highest run-scorer behind Pucovski this season.
Being asked about the prospect of the 37-year old player returning to the national side, Langer spoke against age being a factor for selecting any player. “You never discriminate against age. He’s doing everything possible,” Langer said.
“His numbers in Sheffield Shield cricket – not only this year but the back end of last year – were absolutely elite. There’s no more popular player in the Australian cricket team than Shaun, maybe his brother [Mitchell Marsh] actually. It’s an incredible family, the Marsh family, they’re much loved within the team,” Langer added.
In the last season of Sheffield Shield, Marsh finished as the third-highest run-scorer on the back of amassing 724 runs in nine matches at an average of 48.26 and inclusive of two centuries and three half-centuries.