Siddle to play in pink ball tour matches


Australia fast bowler Peter Siddle will get a chance to impress selectors, after being on the sidelines for most of the Ashes, when he plays for the Prime Minister's XI and the Cricket Australia XI against New Zealand.

Siddle played just the one Ashes Test, and has not featured for Victoria this season in the Matador One Day Cup, so this chance to play under lights, with the pink ball, will be vital for his Test chances.

The third Test of the series against New Zealand, in Adelaide on 23 November, will be the first ever day-night Test, and Sheffield Shield matches, and the above tour games, will be played under those conditions.

Siddle told Melbourne radio station SEN: "I've never trained with a pink ball, haven't had much to do with it at this stage.

"I haven't played any of these (Shield) games over the last couple of years because I've been away with the Test team.

"So for a fair chunk of the Test guys who are going to be around this summer it’s going to be a first for a fair few.

"The first Shield game (for Victoria against Queensland at the MCG) is a pink ball game, a day-nighter, so everyone will get their opportunity there to either play it for the first time or have another crack at it and I think it’s just play it and see how it goes."

After criticism from Oz head coach Darren Lehmann, regarding Siddle's non-selection for Victoria's Matador Cup matches, selector Rod Marsh feels these tour matches will be a good chance to see where Siddle's form is at.

Marsh said: "We believe it is important to field a strong squad against what we know will be a very competitive New Zealand side in these tour matches.

"Peter performed well at The Oval in the final Ashes Test and as part of his preparation for the summer we want to give him some high-standard match practice.

"These tour matches and the first round of the Sheffield Shield give Peter important opportunities to impress ahead of the Test series."