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Rediff News  All News  » Cricket » Cricket Buzz: Australia name master blaster Finch new T20 captain

Cricket Buzz: Australia name master blaster Finch new T20 captain

September 08, 2014 08:46 IST

Aaron Finch of Australia

Aaron Finch of Australia. Photograph: Scott Barbour/Getty Images

Australia have named swashbuckling batsman Aaron Finch captain of the Twenty20 cricket team, replacing George Bailey, Cricket Australia (CA) said on Monday.

Bailey announced on Sunday he had stood down to concentrate on longer forms of the game with an eye to adding to his five test caps.

The rise of Finch, a short form specialist and an aggressive top order batsman, to the captaincy has been rapid, having made his international debut only three years ago in a T20 match against England in 2011.

“Aaron is the World’s No 1 ranked T20 international batsman and thoroughly deserves this opportunity," selector Rod Marsh said in a statement issued by CA.

“He has gained quality leadership experience through his role as captain of the Melbourne Renegades and the Pune Warriors," added Marsh of Finch's domestic T20 experience at home and in India.

"He also captained Australia A against the England Lions last year and excelled when given that chance.

Finch shattered the world record for the highest T20 international innings last year when he blasted 156 runs off 63 balls to guide Australia to victory over England in Southampton.

The 27-year-old also made his one-day international debut last year and has an average of 37.85 from his 28 matches, with a strike rate of 87.65.

“Having the honour to captain your country in any form of the game is something that all young cricketers dream about," said Finch. "It came as a big surprise but it was a very nice phone call to receive from Rod Marsh.

“I have been fortunate enough to play under some fantastic captains, including Michael Clarke and George Bailey and I have learnt a lot from them.

“It goes without saying that I will do my utmost in this role as we lead into the ICC World T20 in about eighteen months’ time. It’s going to be very exciting.”

Finch will take first take the reins in a one-off T20I match against Pakistan in Dubai on October 6, ahead of a test and one-day series against the same team.

Injured Australia captain Clarke named for Pakistan series

Michael Clarke

Michael Clarke. Photograph: BCCI

Injured captain Michael Clarke has been named in Australia's Test and One-day squads for next month's series against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates as he battles to recover from a hamstring strain.

Australia's top batsman, Clarke flew home from Zimbabwe last week after aggravating his left hamstring during a One-day international tournament and had not been cleared to play in the two-Test series and three ODIs.

Australia's selectors are clearly hedging their bets of a recovery, however, and named Clarke captain of the 15-man squad for the Tests and also skipper of the 14-member ODI squad released on Monday.

All-rounder Shane Watson has been named in all three Test, One-day and T20 squads, after missing the One-day tournament against Zimbabwe and South Africa, having rolled an ankle when he stepped on a ball at training.

Top order batsman David Warner, who was rested from the Zimbabwe tour, has also been named in all three squads.

Selectors have included left-arm orthodox spinner Steve O'Keefe and all-rounder Mitchell Marsh in the Test squad.

All-rounder George Bailey, who made his Test debut against England at home last year but was dropped for the South Africa series after struggling with the bat, has also been named in the squad with top order batsman Phil Hughes.

Hughes, who has been in and out of the Australian team during his 26-test career, would travel to the UAE earlier than his team mates to spend time working on his batting against spin with the team's coaching consultant, former Sri Lanka test bowler Muttiah Muralitharan.

Selectors have also named uncapped New South Wales fast bowler Sean Abbott in both the one-day and T20 squads, with exciting young paceman Pat Cummins named in the T20 squad and set for his first international cricket in two years following a serious back injury.

Australia play Pakistan in an one-off T20I on Oct. 6 before three one-day internationals and two tests.

Australia Test squad: Michael Clarke (captain), Alex Doolan, Phil Hughes, Brad Haddin, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Steve O'Keefe, Mitchell Johnson, Chris Rogers, Peter Siddle, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, David Warner, Shane Watson.

ODI squad: Michael Clarke (captain), Sean Abbott, George Bailey, James Faulkner, Aaron Finch, Brad Haddin, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Mitchell Johnson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, David Warner, Shane Watson

T20 squad: Aaron Finch (captain), Sean Abbott, Cameron Boyce, Pat Cummins, James Faulkner, Brad Haddin, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Kane Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, David Warner, Shane Watson

Benn spins Bangladesh deep into trouble

Sulieman Benn of the West Indies bowls

Sulieman Benn of the West Indies bowls. Photograph: Paul Kane/Getty Images

Five wickets from spinner Sulieman Benn helped West Indies to take total control of the first Test against Bangladesh as they dismissed the tourists for 182 on the third day.

West Indies have a lead of 302 runs and could enforce the follow-on on Monday morning to keep the pressure on the tourists.

The Caribbean side declared their first innings at 484 for seven before lunch at Arnos Vale, in Saint Vincent.

Kraigg Brathwaite's marathon innings ended when he was caught at slip by Mominul Haque off Taijul Islam for 212.

Shivnarine Chanderpaul, who had been part of a 161 run parternship with Brathwaite, ended the innings unbeaten on 85.

The only consolation for Bangladesh was Islam ending with five wickets with his slow left-arm but things were soon to get worse for the tourists.

Faced with an hour to survive before lunch, Bangladesh quickly found themselves at 18 for two with Kemar Roach removing Tamimi Iqbal, who edged to Darren Bravo at second slip and Jerome Taylor removing Imrul Keyes in similar fashion.

Shamsur Rahman (35) and Mominul Haque (51) provided some much needed resistance as Bangladesh clawed their way to 105-4 but Benn was to run through the lower order.

Only skipper Mushfiqur Rahim, who carried his bat for 48, was able to cope with the turn and bounce generated by the Barbadian left-armer.

Benn ended with figures of 5-39 while off-spinner Jermaine Blackwood picked up 2-14 in his test debut.

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