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Bailey Reveals Smith to Open in T20s, Labuschagne Misses ODI World Cup Chance
- Updated: August 7, 2023
Australia’s selection chair, George Bailey, disclosed that Marnus Labuschagne’s inconsistency cost him a place in the ODI squad, but there’s still hope for the Test star’s dream of playing in a World Cup.
Following Cricket Australia’s announcement of the squads for white-ball tours to South Africa and India, Bailey also confirmed that Steve Smith would take on the opening role in the upcoming T20Is against South Africa before a busy schedule of one-day matches.
Labuschagne’s absence was the most notable in the extended 18-player World Cup squad revealed today, with selectors set to finalize a 15-player group for the prestigious event as per ICC guidelines by late September.
Having shown promise in his ODI career during 2020 with six scores of 40 or more in his first eight innings, Labuschagne’s performances at the 50-over format have gradually declined. Since New Zealand’s tour of Far North Queensland at the start of the 2022-23 summer, the right-handed batsman has accumulated 170 runs in eight innings at an average of 24.29.
When questioned about dropping Labuschagne, Bailey clarified that the decision was based on form. Although acknowledging that Labuschagne possesses the talent to secure a place in the one-day team at his best, Bailey emphasized that consistent performance in the desired role has been lacking.