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Todd Murphy is likely to make a return for the fifth and final Ashes Test at The Oval as Australia’s spin bowling option.
- Updated: July 27, 2023
- The young off-spinner had discussions with captain Pat Cummins and strategist Dan Vettori, indicating his potential inclusion in the playing XI after losing his spot to Cameron Green in the previous Test.
- The Oval, known for its spin-friendly conditions, could work in favor of Nathan Lyon, who has a strong track record at this venue. However, Lyon’s calf injury at Lord’s has put his participation in doubt, making room for Murphy to step in as the team’s specialist spinner.
- The pitch at The Oval appeared similar to the one used in the World Test Championship final last month, with a tinge of green but not too firm. Cummins hinted that the team might consider playing with just three specialist bowlers again, as they did at Old Trafford, but with the likelihood of Murphy’s return, Green’s spot in the XI could be uncertain.
- Meanwhile, Mitchell Marsh, who faced some soreness in the previous Test, is expected to be fit for the series climax. His ability to bowl alongside his excellent batting performances could be crucial for Australia, especially with the frontline pacemen experiencing fatigue after a demanding tour.
- As for Mitchell Starc, the left-arm fast bowler, there were concerns about his shoulder injury and a niggle in his left leg. However, he has shown resilience throughout the series and is expected to pull through for the final Test. Starc’s experience and determination make him a valuable asset to the team, and his presence is likely to be a significant boost.
- Other options like Michael Neser and Scott Boland might push for recalls, but it seems unlikely that they will replace Starc. The focus remains on ensuring Starc’s fitness and readiness to contribute to the team’s efforts.
- In summary, Todd Murphy’s potential return and the fitness improvements of Mitchell Starc and Mitchell Marsh bode well for Australia as they aim to secure a victory in the final Ashes Test at The Oval. The team’s blend of experience and young talent will be vital in their pursuit of success in the series climax