The Ashes is around the corner, but the Australian selectors are in a major jeopardy over the combination of the team they want to play in the upcoming first Test beginning 23rd November. The Australian number six spot is up for the grabs, and all the potential contenders for the position want to prove their case for the spot right in the JLT Sheffield shield opening rounds. Many former Australian players have expressed their preferences for the spot in the upcoming series.
This time it’s the batting legend Justin Langer who has advocated the case of Hilton Cartwright who plays under him in the Western Australian setup. Cartwright is the front-runner for the spot along with Glenn Maxwell. The other contenders for the spot include Shaun Marsh, Kurtis Patterson, Marcus Stoinis, Daniel Hughes, Travis Head and Joe Burns.
Langer believes Cartwright’s first class average of 50.80 is a proof that he deserves a crack at the spot before other in the Ashes:
“Kurtis Patterson averages 41, and the rest of them average under 40, so for me, Hilton Cartwright has to be the frontrunner to bat at No.6 for Australia.”
Cartwright has played two Tests for the Kangaroos averages 27 and can also bowl gentle medium pace which could be helpful for the Aussies if they don’t play a genuine all-rounder.
Another player who is looking forward for an Ashes spot is Nathan Coulter-Nile, who exploits with the bat have impressed in the past. But Langer believes his batting skills won’t be enough for him to earn him a call for the series,
“I think he’d be smiling as much as I am if you classified him as a straight-out all rounder, he would probably laugh.”
Coulter-Nile will lead the Western Australian XI against England in the first warm-up game scheduled to begin on Saturday at the WACA in Perth. Langer said:
“For Nathan, my preference would be that he doesn’t play against England, to be completely frank, because why would we give England a look at him? That being said, you can have the psychological advantage the other way as well – if he bowls really well, bowls fast and gets some wickets.
“I hope he makes the most of the opportunity – gets a few early scars on the English batsmen if he can – I mean the psychological scars of getting a few wickets.”