The one-off Twenty20 between Pakistan and Australia at Abu Dhabi, which is scheduled on 5 October 2014 might give a huge headache for the Australians who are having their task cut out for having 11 members on the field. Glenn Maxwell, Pat Cummins and Cameron Boyce are all officially part of Australia’s 13-man squad for Sunday’s one-off T20 against Pakistan in Dubai, but they may not even be in the country.
Maxwell is with Kings XI Punjab, Cummins with Kolkata Knight Riders and Boyce with Hobart Hurricanes as all three have made it to the semi-finals of the 2014 Champions League T20. Either one or two of those teams will make the Champions League final, to be played in Bangalore on Saturday, and Cricket Australia has already confirmed the CLT20 will take precedence.
“Due to the condensed nature of the schedule, should any Australian player be required for the Champions League final they will be deemed unavailable for the T20 international against Pakistan on October 5,” Cricket Australia said in a statement in September, when the squads for the UAE tour were announced.
“If they’re available, great, if they’re not, there’ll be someone else to step into their shoes,” Finch said in Dubai. “In Maxwell’s case, we’ve got a couple of guys here as cover. Phil Hughes is here for the one-day series coming up so it might mean he slots into the side somewhere.
“But it’s exciting for those guys to play in a world tournament. It’s just another thing that gets thrown up and you have to embrace it. The Champions League is such a big competition and a world competition now, guys have to be given the opportunity to perform there on that stage. We’ll probably know our XI once the Champions League semi-finals have happened. If there’s a spot there, we’re going to have to fill it. Whether it’s Hughesy, whether he bats at the top of the order or in the middle order if he gets an opportunity, we’ll have to wait and see. Nathan Lyon started his career as a Twenty20 player and did an exceptional job. He’s had some good success when he’s played limited-overs cricket as well. They’d be very well placed to fill a spot if need be.” Finch added.