In the first Test series against Pakistan, opener David Warner has secured his place in the squad of 14 for Australia. Despite his outstanding performance in the World Cup, Warner has been struggling in Test cricket since the 2019-20 season. His average in Tests has been around 28 since then, with only one century after 2020. Despite this, selectors like Cameron Bancroft, Marcus Harris, and Matt Renshaw are vying for that spot. Nevertheless, Australian selectors are currently placing their trust in Warner for the upcoming Pakistan series. Warner is contemplating retirement from Tests after the Sydney Test in the series.
The Pakistan-Australia series begins with the Perth Test on December 14. Following the Boxing Day Test in Melbourne (December 26), the Sydney Test will commence on January 3. Warner sees this home ground match as a culmination of his 13-year Test career. In June, Warner hinted, “If I get an opportunity in the Test Championship final and if I perform well in the Pakistan series, then that’s it for me from Tests. I can very well say goodbye there and not play the West Indies series.”
During the squad announcement for the Perth Test, George Bailey, the chairman of the Australian selection committee, mentioned that under Pat Cummins’ leadership, the team has become a strong unit for the long term.
Bancroft, Harris, and Renshaw—these three cricketers are part of the Prime Minister’s XI against Pakistan. Bailey expressed his excitement, saying, “There will be a short to medium-term opportunity to get into the team. I am looking forward to seeing the best from those who are performing well in domestic cricket. Many of them will get a fantastic chance against Pakistan’s opposition towards the end of the week.”
Australia’s most recent Test was against England in July, where they made a few changes from the squad. Spinner Nathan Lyon returned from injury, while another spinner, Todd Murphy, missed out. Lyon, who currently has 496 Test wickets, aims to reach the milestone of 500 wickets in the Perth Test. Among those three spinners, Muttiah Muralitharan, Shane Warne, and Anil Kumble, who have crossed the 500-wicket mark, Lyon is vying for the achievement.
The Perth Test has included two pace-bowling all-rounders, Mitchell Marsh and Cameron Green. The responsibility of the pace attack lies with Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, and skipper Cummins. Lance Morris, eagerly awaited by the team, might join the squad soon. Morris, capable of bowling at 150 kilometers per hour, could make his debut in Perth.