Cameron Green will make his Test debut at Adelaide Oval if passed fit after he suffered a minor concussion last Frirday, while Matthew Wade looms as a likely makeshift opener if Australia rejig their order.
National team coach Justin Langer declared the 21-year-old allrounder will face India under lights in the four-Test series opener that begins on Thursday, provided he ticks the required boxes under Cricket Australia’s concussion policy.
“He had another test this morning that we got good news on,” Langer said prior to Australia’s training session on Tuesday.
Opener Marcus Harris and allrounder Moises Henriques have been added to the Test squad as cover in recent days. The major question selectors are stewing over is who will open the batting.
Joe Burns is terribly out of form, having managed just 62 runs from nine first-class knocks this season, but Langer suggested he could still potentially retain his spot in the Test XI.
“I’ve been talking to Joe the last week or so ... I’ve been privately and publicly backing Joe in the whole time,” Langer said. “He’s a very good player. You don’t lose your talent overnight.
“He also understands that runs are the greatest currency for any player. He’s been light on. We’ll get eyes on him today, see how he’s going ... we’ll make a decision on who is going to open in the next day or so.”
Langer said speculation that Marnus Labuschagne could open in the pink-ball Test is incorrect, noting “he’s done an amazing job at No 3” and will remain there.
Langer flagged No 5 batsman Wade “could handle [batting] anywhere” in the order.
“He’s tough, mentally tough and physically tough,” Langer said. “He’s got good footwork. He’s got the game for it [opening the batting]. He can counter attack like David Warner does and a lot of the great openers do.
“He can definitely do it. We just have to work out what the best make up of our team is going to be.”
If Green is presented with a baggy green, as Langer hopes, it will mean Australia are forced to tinker with their top six. Langer previously indicated that Wade and Travis Head will retain their spots in the XI, which means a promotion up the order could be on the cards for the Tasmanian veteran.