Australia search for combinations and context

Reports & previews

Heading into the T20I tri-series it seems Australia are approaching the contest as something of a burden.

They have chosen to rest skipper Steve Smith and add a group of untested Big Bash League stars into the mix.

Even the fact that Australia face their oldest rivals and their closest neighbor in the series seemingly hasn’t granted the forthcoming attraction any buzz down under.

Perhaps the cricket public are all Twenty20d out after a full Big Bash programme that ran through the Ashes and ODI series to big crowds around Australia or perhaps they sense that the players themselves don’t ascribe much meaning to this tourney.

All three sides will be looking to sharpen their skills and work on combinations with the World T20 set to be staged in Australia in two years time and that will take priority over winning some hastily named trophy and the purse that goes with it.

For the guys coming in it represents an opportunity to represent their country even if nobody will remember the series in six months time.

David Warner gets to hone his leadership skills developed as skipper of the Sunrisers Hyderabad with a similarly rag tag group and will likely also be eager to end a barren run that started in the longer formats.

Alex Carey has been earmarked as a future Test player and will naturally want to impress while D’Arcy Short may only ever play the shortest format for his country but T20 cricket has given him a platform that could see him jet around the world.

Without any of the bowlers selected for the Test squad that will travel to South Africa the attack looks likely to be led by Kane Richardson and Billy Stanlake with Andrew Tye’s variations backing them up.

With an inexperienced squad much will be expected of Chris Lynn, Glenn Maxwell and Travis Head in their respective roles in the batting lineup with Short and Ben Dwarshuis to be given license to attack.

Marcus Stoinis is building a reputation as a big game player and will no doubt have a few moments to prove his mettle yet again as Australia try to get one over England and fellow co-hosts New Zealand.

Ashton Agar could get an opportunity to unseat Adam Zampa as the lead spinner in the T20I cricket with his ability with the bat meaning he could also feature even if the leggy plays.

Australia start the tri-series at home but if they are to win it they will need to get the business done in New Zealand.

Australia squad: David Warner (c), Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Ben Dwarshuis, Travis Head, Chris Lynn, Glenn Maxwell, Kane Richardson, D’Arcy Short, Billy Stanlake, Marcus Stoinis, Andrew Tye, Adam Zampa