After Joe Burns’ display on Day 2, Allan Border has deemed that the Queenslander is mentally a bit short on confidence and absolutely riding on no luck whatsoever. At the same time, he also reckoned that gamble to open with Matthew Wade certainly didn’t work and backfired on the hosts.
Ahead of the first Test, the Australian selectors were a bit tied - in terms of their selection choices for the playing XI that would walk out at the Adelaide Oval. Incumbent opener David Warner was ruled out of the Test, with a groin injury and Will Pucovski, who was touted to open, ruled out with a bout of concussion. That certainly presented the hosts with two options - recall for Marcus Harris or promotion for Matthew Wade.
With the Australians going with the latter, it also proved to be a crucial factor to have Joe Burns continue as the opener despite a string of poor performance. While his bad luck and rotten form continued, Burns was dismissed early in the innings, with Jasprit Bumrah’s late in-swinger catching him off-guard. Following the first innings, former Australian batsman Allan Border stated that Burns is mentally a bit short on confidence and riding on no luck.
"With Burnsy, I mean we were always just worried about that because he hasn't shown any form whatsoever," Border said.
"His footwork, mentally he's a bit short and he's just having no luck. Anyway, the experiment didn't work, we were always worried that would be the case," Border added.
Alongside that, he also pointed out that Wade’s promotion to the top of the order was just a gamble, derived from the success in the limited-overs format but one that failed.
"It was a gamble because you're shuffling one guy (Wade) from his customary Test match position. Yes, he opens in short-form cricket, but that's a vastly different beast to what they're facing at the moment."
While Pucovski is not yet deemed fit for the big Test at the MCG, Border stated that he was highly hopeful of the talented Victorian opener playing in the first Test.
"I tended to agree with the gamble in that I didn't see an obvious replacement with Pucovski out, I was hoping he'd be fit to play," he said.