LET’S just deal in hypotheticals briefly.
If, and it’s a big if, for some unforeseen reason the Australian Cricket Team couldn’t face up against the Indian’s on Boxing Day, where could they find a replacement squad?
Well, seeing this is the Melbourne Football Club website, obviously the answer is going to be right here.
So, to get into the summer spirit, chief selectors Angus Brayshaw and Sam Weideman were asked to put their best side forward, just in case they were required out on the MCG.
According to the experts, here’s how Melbourne batting line-up would look:
A man with plenty of ability, but the temperament must be questioned.
Harmes will look to get his side off to a fast start, but needs to adapt to the longer format of the game.
A smooth operator with a big responsibility.
Fritsch’s MyCricket average of 21 makes him a safe option to see off the new ball, before taking the gloves behind the stumps with the cleanest mitts at the club.
This exciting prospect emerged from Caulfield, and will benefit from Mitch Hannan’s departure.
At just 20 years of age, Jordon will be given the opportunity at first drop, in the best long-term interests of the team.
After recovering from two ACL injuries, Nietschke takes on an important role at No.4, with runs under his belt in the South Australian outback (or close to).
While some may think the Demons’ youthful top order leaves them vulnerable, Jasprit Bumrah’s pace won’t faze this resilient batsman.
A journeyman with flexibility, who has played at district level.
Brown is one of few who can clear the wide square boundaries of the MCG, and he provides an option with the ball if Cheteshwar Pujara tries to bat the game into a draw, again.
The ultimate all-rounder, and poster boy for the side.
Weideman is best known for bowling express pace in backyard cricket (average of 8.56 from 70 career matches) and for making 102 not out in F Grade as a 16-year-old.
He’s built like Tarzan and bowls like him too.
Tomlinson will take the new rock and steam in from the Members end.
The real reason Virat Kohli has gone home.
Petty bowls short and sharp, and has a hooping in-swinger up his sleeve, so expect to see the former country South Australian representative bring Jordon into the game at short leg.
Given he was one of the selectors, Brayshaw was always going to make the team.
He’ll chip in with a couple of offies when required, but it’s his lip in the field which will be most valued.
On the back of some strong changeroom cricket form, Hibberd earns his stripes.
Likely to be the first-choice spinner with a lethal wrong-un and he’ll be hoping to get some turn on the MCG road.
Max Gawn ©
At 208cm, opposition batsman fear the bounce from this fast bowler.
If anyone can get something out of the deck, it will be Gawn, and of course, he will lead the side this summer as well.
Great for team morale, but is one of the smart ones who realised at a young age that cricket is a cruel sport.
Spargo will carry the drinks this test and be praying for rain to allow him to whip out the DJ decks and raise the spirits in the lockers.