Marsh well aware of slump in batting form


Australia all-rounder Mitchell Marsh is aware that he may soon be considered a pure bowler in Tests if his batting stats don't improve, and hopes the second Test against New Zealand will provide the opportunity to do so.

The Aussies comfortably won the opener against the Kiwis, making them firm favourites in the betting odds for the second Test, but that doesn't mean Marsh isn't worried about his own form.

He was out for a duck in the first Test, with the Aussies batting just once in their innings victory in Wellington. Coming in at six, Marsh has struggled with the bat, with a best knock of 34 at home this season.

Marsh said on Cricinfo: "The frustrating part for me is at this level even if your team is doing well you're judged on your numbers and I understand that.

"The hardest part for me is we're doing well as a team but at the top level you have to be performing and contributing in a big way to keep your spot.

"It's been a little bit hard but that's international cricket, that's why it's the pinnacle of our game. I'll continue to work hard.

"My record with the bat is not great over the last 12 months but I've still got great confidence that I can turn it around and start scoring big runs for Australia.

"I'll continue to keep working hard. I know my game is good enough at this level and it's just a matter of time before I get in and get a big one for the team."
Marsh has kept his place because of his bowling though, and with an average a touch under 30 this season, he's one of the better performers.
He added: "I'm always working with [bowling coach] Craig McDermott to improve and that's probably been the biggest thing for me just the consistency.

"It's all about at certain times when, as the allrounder and as the fourth seamer you can attack but it's also about doing a role for the team and holding up an end and bowling in partnerships with the strike bowlers.

"For me it's about learning when I can and can't do that and to keep improving."

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