Just days ahead of the first Test, Cricket Australia has confirmed that Victorian opener Marcus Harris has been added to the Test squad for the Adelaide Oval encounter. Trevor Hohns also was hopeful that the opening duo of David Warner and Will Pucovski will be available for the Boxing Day Test.
After the Victorian opener, Will Pucovski walked out with a concussion in the first warm-up game, the pressure was on Marcus Harris to take the mantle and prove his form in the second warm-up game against India’s first-team bowling attack. On Day 1 of the pink-ball warm-up game, Harris proved his worth with the bat as he put on a determined show and the required steel of patience in the hour and half of display. He scored a 47-ball 26 and eventually was dismissed by Mohammed Shami via a late outswinger.
Harris, who last was part of the Australian squad in the away Ashes series against England, has been added to the squad for the first Test, after his show in the first-class scene with a 239 against South Australia.
“Given the spate of injuries in recent weeks, we’re fortunate to be able to bring a player of Marcus’ calibre into the Test squad. Marcus has been in outstanding form for Victoria this season and has had the benefit of facing India’s bowlers in both three-day tour matches at Drummoyne and under lights at the SCG,” said Australian selector Trevor Hohns.
Alongside that, Hohns also provided a timely update on the fitness of David Warner and the availability of the Victorian opener Will Pucovski – who would not be available in time for the first Test and would be hopefully back for the Boxing Day Test.
“At the same time, we are disappointed for David and Will that they will not be available for the first Test. We have taken a conservative approach in managing Will since he sustained the concussion and hope he and David will be back to full health ahead of the Boxing Day Test.”
Meanwhile, at the second warm-up game, NSW pacer Harry Conway has been ruled out of the remainder of the tour game after suffering a delayed concussion. The bowler was hit on his helmet after a sharp bouncer from Mohammed Siraj, which eventually has ruled him out of the remaining two days of the game. Mark Steketee has been named as his replacement and would take the field for the last two days.