Voges edges out young guns
AN Ashes tour is not the time to be taking a punt on a young talent from Shield cricket, Australia’s team-performance manager Pat Howard says.
Joe Burns, the Queenslander who made his debut on Boxing Day and scored two half-centuries in the Sydney Test against India, isn’t required for the West Indies series starting this week or the July-August Ashes tour.
Adam Voges, the uncapped 35-year-old who averaged a Bradmanesque 104.46 for Western Australia last season, has been preferred.
Whether Voges (pictured) can win a place in Australia’s top six for the Ashes is unclear. Shaun Marsh’s century in the warmup match in Antigua will make it tough for Voges to break into the side for the two-Test series against the West Indies starting on Thursday morning.
“It goes without saying that the Ashes is not a development tour,” Howard said. “I applaud the selectors there. They are dealing with today.”
Howard, national coach Darren Lehmann and chairman of selectors Rod Marsh will have some big upheavals to manage in the near future.
Even if Voges earns a callup and covers himself in glory at Lord’s and The Oval in the coming months, international retirement could also be coming for him within a year or two of having his first major impact at Test level.
That’s the reality of Test cricket and it’s something ageing opener Chris Rogers (35), gloveman Brad Haddin (37) and paceman Ryan Harris (35) are also confronted with.