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The Australian - - SLOW BOAT TO CHINA - RICHARD EARLE CRICKET

Alex Carey has backed Aaron Finch to snap a dev­as­tat­ing form slump as Aus­tralia plots the “con­fi­dence-boost­ing’’ re­venge against In­dia that em­bold­ens their World Cup de­fence.

Aus­tralia en­ter a World Cup year without one-day se­ries suc­cess since Jan­uary 2017 against Pak­istan. Six se­ries losses lay in the dis­tance in­clud­ing the Cham­pi­ons Tro­phy in Eng­land and Carey con­cedes ‘‘it’s been a while’’ without win­ning.

“It would mean a lot. A se­ries win would be a great re­sult and really big con­fi­dence booster,” said the vice-cap­tain, with Aus­tralia 1-0 up en­ter­ing to­day’s sec­ond match of the three-game se­ries in Ade­laide.

“We def­i­nitely want to win a se­ries against In­dia, bounce back from that Test se­ries. I guess with the World Cup not too far away to have some suc­cess in Aus­tralia against one of the best white-ball sides in the world would mean a lot for our cricket go­ing for­ward.

“If we’re play­ing the cricket we know we’re good enough to play, the re­sults will prob­a­bly look after them­selves.”

Open­ers David Warner and Travis Head av­er­aged 73 and 67 re­spec­tively in Aus­tralia’s last 50-over con­quest against Pak­istan but Carey and Finch have been united at the top of the or­der against In­dia.

Dumped from the Test side after av­er­ag­ing 16 against In­dia, Finch (6) failed in the one-day se­ries opener at the SCG. The left-han­der av­er­aged 19 in the one-day se­ries against South Africa last Novem­ber and has 66 runs from his past seven T20 in­ter­na­tion­als.

But Aus­tralian one-day skip­per Finch is “go­ing fine” de­spite his lean run in­sists keeper-bats­man Carey.

“Finchy’s a really proud Aus­tralian crick­eter and wants to bounce back, score big runs for us,” said Carey, laud­ing Finch’s lead­er­ship and 11 ODI tons.

“The work he’s do­ing off the field, he’s so close to really nail­ing a match-win­ning in­nings.

“For me to bounce off him in my role as well, he’s been amaz­ing off the field more so.”

Glenn Maxwell’s best bat­ting slot in a side that has strug­gled to match the 6.25 run rate per over of World Cup favourite Eng­land con­tin­ues to be a bone of con­tention. If Maxwell isn’t re­quired un­til the late overs at No 7 then the side is do­ing well says Carey.

“He has had lots of op­por­tu­ni­ties in the top or­der and the other night, hav­ing him in the sheds when there is three overs to go means we have done some­thing right through the mid­dle and top or­der,” said Carey of Maxwell.

“You could ar­gue the point he could be bat­ting higher but it is pretty ex­cit­ing to have that power hit­ting.”

Carey says the Aus­tralians have their tails up fol­low­ing the im­pres­sive en­try of Ja­son Behren­dorff (2-39) and the way Jhye Richard­son (4-26) rushed through In­dia in Syd­ney on Sat­ur­day. Com­pe­ti­tion for World Cup spots is pos­i­tive.

“It is a really good op­por­tu­nity for Behren­dorff, Richard­son and Peter Sid­dle who all played really well the other night,” he said. “It was a great op­por­tu­nity for me too at the top of the or­der and Peter Hand­scomb (73) com­ing back in.

“If you look across the list, there are so many op­por­tu­ni­ties for guys to put their hand up and really make a spot their own.”

All-rounder Mitch Marsh trained yes­ter­day after re­cov­er­ing from gas­tri­tis but is un­likely to be risked in fore­cast 42C tem­per­a­tures.

Leg-spin­ner Adam Zampa will push for a re­call on his home deck pos­si­bly at off-spin­ner Nathan Lyon’s ex­pense while Ade­laide Strik­ers tear­away Billy Stan­lake craves a start.

CRICKET: After nine months of hell, Cameron Ban­croft’s bat is do­ing his talk­ing again, and he’s mak­ing quite the state­ment with two knocks that have kept the Perth Scorchers’ Big Bash League sea­son alive.

Ban­croft gained recog­ni­tion through­out the crick­et­ing world for all the wrong rea­sons when he was the cen­tre of the ball-tam­per­ing con­tro­versy in South Africa last March.

His sub­se­quent nine-month sus­pen­sion pro­vided some chal­leng­ing mo­ments, but the 26year-old has now played five BBL games and is in sparkling form. After strug­gling in his first three games back for the Scorchers with scores of two, 19 and 24, while wick­et­keep­ing in losses, he made a ter­rific 59 off 42 balls in last Wednes­day’s win over the Mel­bourne Stars.

That was just Perth’s sec­ond vic­tory in seven games and they needed to keep win­ning as the side re­turned to Op­tus Sta­dium on Sun­day against the Syd­ney Six­ers, in the first of four straight home games.

The Six­ers were sent in to bat by Scorchers cap­tain Ash­ton Turner and posted 5-177, but once Ban­croft came to­gether with Turner in the run chase, the home side took charge. The pair put to­gether 98 runs in their stand off just 62 balls be­fore Turner was out for a scin­til­lat­ing 60 in 30 balls, with his half-cen­tury com­ing in just 22 de­liv­er­ies.

Ban­croft car­ried his bat for the in­nings, hit­ting eight fours and a six and fin­ished on 87 not out from 61 balls. His abil­ity to find the boundary, ex­ploit gaps in the field and run well be­tween the wick­ets showed he could be more than just a Test bats­man for Aus­tralia mov­ing for­ward. Hav­ing gone through what he did in 2018, Ban­croft said he is en­joy­ing be­ing able to fo­cus on his cricket again.

“I’m lit­er­ally just turn­ing up to train­ing ev­ery day and try­ing to be bet­ter, it’s as sim­ple as that,” he said. “I’m not try­ing too hard, and am en­joy­ing this great game. I’m hav­ing a lot of fun out here

‘I’m not try­ing too hard, and am en­joy­ing this great game. I’m hav­ing a lot of fun …’ CAMERON BAN­CROFT PERTH SCORCHERS

whether it’s my day or it isn’t. I’m just really grate­ful to be here, it’s awe­some.”

After build­ing some mo­men­tum with con­sec­u­tive wins, Ban­croft’s fo­cus is on keep­ing the Scorchers’ win­ning form go­ing with three home games to come start­ing on Fri­day against the Ho­bart Hur­ri­canes.

“It’s an­other tick tonight and we’ll move for­ward against the Hur­ri­canes later this week,” Ban­croft said. “We’ve won two games in a row now so hope­fully we can keep that go­ing.

“Twenty20 is a game of luck — some­times it goes your way and you are able to come off.”

GETTY IM­AGES

Cameron Ban­croft shows his good form on Sun­day night

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