Australian Test Captain Tim Paine made an essential announcement via press conference.
It happened within an hour after Australia lose the 3rd Test to India by 135 runs.
Paine has added Marnus Labuschagne as an additional member to the Baggy Green squad ahead of the 4th & Final Test.
That’s where the next occasion will take place on Thursday at the Sydney Cricket Ground.
His brief Test stint background
First of all, welcome back Labuschangne in the Baggy Green arena.
It’s not the first time that he played for the Australian Test squad.
You may want to look back at the away Pakistan tour in the United Arab Emirates two months ago.
His batting may have fired off slow and steady which is normal like Marcus Harris & Travis Head has done on these first few occasions.
Yes, his debut batting card ended on zero during the 2nd Innings like fellow debutant Travis Head.
Though, Labuschagne fired off a bit on 13 in the 4th Innings.
Moving onto the next test, Labuschagne did improve a bit more in the same opening spell on 25.
But the highlight so far for him is that he did reach his highest score of 43 during his 2nd spell.
So there’s still a bit of room for Labuschangne to at last reach his maiden 50.
Regarding the ball, it looked a lot impressive surprisingly compared to the usual left-armer Jon Holland.
He picked up seven wickets throughout his two-match spell.
Likewise, from his batting, his maiden Test wicket victim was Asad Shafiq on 80 in the 1st Innings.
Plus one more scalp out of the opening test on Haris Sohail in the 3rd Innings.
Let’s move onto the 2nd Test where Labuschagne’s leg spin has improved this time around.
If you look at his best individual performance, He secured three wickets for 45 runs (1st Innings).
Labuschagne denied both Fakhar Zaman & Sarfraz Ahmed their possible 100s plus Bilal Asif.
Don’t forget in the 3rd Innings, Labuschagne did deny S.Ahmed again his possible 100 on 81 & Asad Shafiq’s possible 50 on 44.
Conclusion Part 1
Yes, he didn’t take the first pick of the Australian Test squad during the first three occasions v India.
At that time, selectors judge potential candidates based on Sheffield Shield performances.
For example, Marcus Harris’s 250 run spell in one innings plus a few 50 & 100s consistently helped him win a cap for Australia.
On the other hand, one batsman scored a couple of base single & double-digit scores.
Hence, the batsman who failed to score the 50s & 100s doesn’t win a spot to play for Australia.
Although, he did respond late to his axing by backing up 78 during the 4th innings.
That happened during Round 6 of the 2018-19 Sheffield Shield season v Tasmania in Hobart on 7-10 December.
So nearly at the same time as the Opening Test between Australia v India took place in Adelaide.
Conclusion Part 2
But I have to say that Labuschagne will offer versatility both the bat and his leg-spin since the Sydney pitch is spin friendly.
If he was to make the most out of this all-rounder role, then Labuschagne will directly replace Mitchell Marsh at No.6.
That way you have three fast bowlers in action such as:
- Mitchell Starc
- Pat Cummins
- Josh Hazlewood
And to round out the bowling attack, Labuschagne will only backup Nathan Lyon.
He usually scores off runs all the time with the bat in the top order for his state team, Queensland.
However, it’s still early days as let’s see how Labuschangne will go on his 3rd Test match & 1st in Australia.
If he does play in the starting XI, then let’s hope that Labuschagne will believe himself 100% of doing a good job for Australia.
Labuschangne will not only want to score a maiden Test 50 & even 100.
But also he can too take some wickets in hand and lessen the bowlers’ workload that will help Australia retain the home series v India, 2-2.