Cricket Australia Items/news/2013/7/31/chappell-calls-for-clarke-at-no3-in-ashes

Chappell calls for Clarke at No.3 in Ashes

UPDATED 31 July, 2013 7:19AM AEST | by AAP

Former Test skipper Ian Chappell says Michael Clarke's refusal to promote himself to No.3 for the third Ashes Test is crazy.

The bold move won't happen because captain Clarke is happier at No.5, despite the inexperience of his top six.

Chappell also wants the Aussies, who trail two-nil in the five-match series, to at least go down fighting if they are going to cop another defeat in Manchester in the match starting on Thursday.

"They need (David) Warner in the side but they don't need him batting at six. He should be opening but I fear he won't be," Chappell told AAP on Tuesday.

"His talents won't be entirely wasted but they'll be diluted if he bats down the order, especially at number six.

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"I'd be opening with Shane Watson and Warner."

Chappell says a major problem is the key No.3 slot which is currently filled by Usman Khawaja (averaging 30.09 in seven Tests).

"Long term you've got to have a decent number three and Australia hasn't got one," Chappell said.

"I'm biased because I batted a lot of my career there but I think it's the best place in the order to bat.

"I don't understand why Michael Clarke doesn't go there."

Chappell says Clarke is not a typical No.3.

"But when you haven't got one who's a prototype then your best player's got to play there," Chappell added.

"Michael Clarke to me should be batting at three but he won't which I think is crazy.

"The other reason I think he's mad is because if you ask any self-respecting batsman whether he'd like to come in at one for not many or three for very few, most guys would say I'd rather come in at one for not many.

"Australia has been three down for not many regularly for the last 18 months.

"Why you'd want to keep coming in at three for not many is beyond me."

Chappell said Australia's batsmen would fare better under Australian conditions in this summer's Ashes return series.

"What's important for the Australian team is if they're going to go down, they go down fighting, kicking and screaming," he said.

"(The public) were devastated by what happened at Lord's because of the way they crumbled and went down easily.

"You want to know that when we do lose, the opposition knows they've been in a bloody fight and they've had to play at their absolute best to beat you."

The opinions expressed here are the views of the writer and do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of Cricket Australia

First Posted 31 July, 2013 6:58AM AEST

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