Marsh excited about revitalised Test side

Australia all-rounder Mitchell Marsh is excited about the new-look Test team, and hopes to be part of a side that can cut its own path, now that so many seniors have retired from the game.

Marsh is one of the young crop left over from the Ashes, after five senior players, including captain Michael Clarke and all-rounder Shane Watson, retired. Watson's exit means Marsh has a golden opportunity to make number six his own.

The youngster is hoping to use the first round of the upcoming Sheffield Shield to prove his worth, as the Test side will be picked after that ahead of the Tests against New Zealand.

Marsh said on the CA website: "Obviously there's some new faces around the squad and that's exciting not only for us as a team but also for the Australian public who come and watch us.

"I think as a young group we've got an opportunity to start something special and hopefully this summer is the start of that. I'm very excited about the group that we're going to have.

"We're going into this series very positive, it's nice to be playing back in Australia again and every team that comes here knows they're in for a good challenge playing in our conditions."

A number of players have been pushing for places, with Joe Burns and Usman Khawaja doing very well in the warm-up game against New Zealand in Canberra this past weekend. Marsh hopes he did enough too.

He added: "That's an opportunity I'm really looking forward to, I just want to nail down that number six spot in the Test arena and hopefully this summer is a chance for me to do that.

"But I've got to get picked first.

"Any time you get  a good cricket wicket you want to bat as long as you can, and I would have liked to have spent a bit more time in the middle (during the NZ tour match in Canberra).

"But it was great for guys who probably haven't batted as much (Burns and Khawaja) to get hundreds and push for selection as well.

"Both batting sides got a chance to spend some time in the middle which, at the end of the day, is what these games are for.

"It's always nice to be playing with the red ball again, and I think I speak on behalf of everyone with that.

"On the bowling front, I got some overs out which is what I needed to keep ticking over and hopefully I can get through the Tasmanian Shield game (in Hobart) and perform well there."