Ponting feels Finch should take first strike on Test debut

Australia great Ricky Ponting feels Aaron Finch should open the batting against Pakistan in the two-match Test series in the UAE next month.

The 31-year-old Finch, who is already an experienced international cricketer with 93 ODIs and 42 T20Is under his belt, is in line to make his Test debut after being included in Australia’s squad

Finch usually bats at the top of the order in white-ball cricket, where he is very aggressive, but comes in in the middle-order in first-class matches for his state Victoria and recently in county cricket with Surrey.

Ponting, who played in 168 Tests for the Aussies, believes Finch’s aggressive approach will work better against the new ball in the longest format even though the right-hander only averages a shade more than 36 in the ‘whites’.

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In quotes published on Cricket Australia’s website, Ponting said: “Although his (Finch’s) red-ball numbers aren’t outstanding, he has been in real good form in other formats of the game all around the world for the last few years.

“The conditions in that part of the world in the UAE, I don’t think the new ball should do too much.

“It will probably be more like starting an innings against the white ball, which Finchy is very very good at.”

The first Test between Pakistan and Australia gets underway in Dubai on 7 October while the second game of the series will be played in Abu Dhabi.