Australia’s limited-overs skipper Aaron Finch conceded that his Test career is all but over and claimed that he will choose to stay away from first-class cricket to give more opportunities to up and coming youngsters. Finch further urged Australia to follow the ‘ECB model’ in resting players.
One of the many beneficiaries of David Warner’s one-year ban was Aaron Finch, who played 5 Tests for Australia in 2018, but the Victorian’s red-ball career came to an abrupt end after a rough series versus India. Finch was axed from the Test squad after posting a solitary fifty in the first three Tests against India, after which the selectors moved on from him in Test cricket, in a way permanently.
Finch has since largely restrained from playing first-class cricket for Victoria, almost giving away that he, at 34, had no hopes of a recall. Speaking to cricket.com.au, the incumbent Aussie white-ball skipper conceded that his Test career was all but over, and revealed that he has chosen not to play first-class cricket in order to not block the pathways of youngsters coming through the system in Victoria.
"I wouldn't say there’s no more red-ball cricket. The young Victorian kids coming through, I don't want to be standing in their way taking their spot. We've got some great young batters and with big (Australia squads) and bubbles, there's going to be more players on tour,” Finch told cricket.com.au.
"I don't want to be standing in the way of these young kids when I'm not going to be playing Test cricket again."
More pertinent to the Aussie skipper, however, is his worrying form in the Big Bash League, where he endured a scarcely believable stinker of a season, averaging 13.76 with the bat. The right-hander did not pass 15 in each of his last 8 innings and, as a result, saw his side Renegades finish bottom of the table. Finch admitted that he had a shocker with the bat, but insisted that players are bound to endure such phases in the shortest format.
"I had an absolute shocker with the bat. The harder I trained the worse I got, which is the opposite to what everyone tells you to do.
"It was just one of those seasons. In T20 cricket when you're looking to be aggressive, looking to take risks, it can go against you. That's OK – I can wear that."
It was announced earlier today that Finch would be leading an inexperienced Australian side in 5 T20Is versus arch-rivals New Zealand next month, making it six straight months inside bio-bubbles for the explosive opener. Finch conceded that extended bubble-life is unsustainable and urged Cricket Australia to go down the path of England, who have adhered to an efficient ‘rest and rotate’ policy to ensure adequate family time for players.
"If you’re playing a few formats of the game, there's going to need to be a chop-out from selectors and Cricket Australia," said Finch.
"You notice what England are doing with their squads at the moment where there are guys who aren't travelling for the first two Tests (against India) and then coming in (later).
"If the COVID bubble and hubs continue for a long time, that will be something that's looked into, no doubt. The welfare of players is paramount and being locked up for months is pretty unsustainable, when you're away from your families and your families can't travel.
"That will be individual as well – some guys who are married with kids will find it tougher than a young single guy, for example. We just have to monitor everything in that regard."