Aaron Finch, check.
Moises Henriques, check.
Tim Paine, check.
Jhye Richardson, check.
AJ Tye, check.
Michael Klinger, check.
That’s just the few names that Silly Point put forward for selection for Australia’s T20I party for the series against Sri Lanka that have indeed made the squad then.
I knew I should have listed Ashton Turner as well!
36-year-old run machine Michael Klinger is finally rewarded for his consistent run getting both in Australia and England in recent years. The stars have finally aligned for Klinger, what with the poor scheduling of this series meaning that it clashes with Australia’s Test tour of India, therefore opening a few vacancies in the squad as well as Klinger’s Perth Scorchers winning the Big Bash just a couple of weeks ago, thanks in no small part to Klinger’s quickfire 71 not out in the final. Scorchers coach Justin Langer is also involved with the squad to take on Sri Lanka and there’s no doubt that he will have vociferously campaigned for Klinger’s inclusion.
Though there were tears of joy for Klinger, there probably wasn’t such emotion for either this year’s Big Bash leading run-scorer, Ben Dunk (364 runs @ 52.00), or its leading wicket-taker, Sean Abbott (20 wickets @ 16.15). Abbott’s time will surely come but the proverbial ship has almost certainly long since left the harbour for Dunk, leaving him stranded on 3 T20I caps, won back in 2014. There are no doubt countless examples of why international selection isn’t as simple as picking the leading run-scorer or wicket-taker but with this series coming straight off the back of a Big Bash campaign, a little meritocracy might have been welcome.
There also wasn’t room for Cameron White following his recent criticism of the make-up/selection of the national side.
The three match T20I series commences on 17th February in Melbourne.