Lehmann: We’re close to our best XI
Australia coach Darren Lehmann says he is fairly sure about what his best XI is as they head to the World Twenty20 in India, though the opening batsman combination could change with each game.
The Aussies go to India on the back of a two-one series win against South Africa, and there they used opener David Warner in the middle order to good effect. This was to try and get Shane Watson and Usman Khawaja in the side, as well as Aaron Finch.
Like the Proteas, who have a similar dilemma in that Quinton de Kock, Hashim Amla, and AB de Villiers all like to open, Australia have a glut of top order stars. But Lehmann feels Warner is doing well down the order, for now.
Lehmann said: "We are getting closer to settling on our best XI, but again, the side could change from match to match depending on who we're playing, where we're playing and the state of the tournament.
"Same goes for the much talked about opening combination.
"We tried three different pairings in this series; Khawaja/Finch, Finch/Watson, Watson/Khawaja, and you can throw David Warner's name in the mix too.
"‘Bull’ was fantastic in this series in his new role in the middle order, but that doesn't mean he'll stay there for the whole tournament.
"We'll look at the conditions, team matchups and the combinations we think will give us our best chance of winning. And that could mean batting Bull at the top or in the middle, where he's made a fantastic start."
The Aussies are one of the tournament favourites, and Lehmann knows that losing a group match could spell the end of their challenge, and feels there is 'no excuse' to lose early on.
He added: "Looking ahead, with only four group matches, our first two World T20 games against New Zealand and a qualifier are crucial – they loom as vital, must-win games.
"We land in Kolkata on Friday before our warm-up match against the West Indies on the 13th, then it's straight into it.
"Our preparation has been excellent, our squad is healthy and we're coming off a hard-fought series win against one of the top nations in the world.
"There are no excuses."
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