How the Aussies fared in Darwin | cricket.com.au

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How the Aussies fared in Darwin

The lowdown on how each Test squad member fared during the Darwin intra-squad warm-up ahead of the Qantas tour of Bangladesh

Steve Smith

Australia's skipper occupied the crease for 150 balls across days one and two, making 84 in the process before retiring. He handled a fiery Pat Cummins and a trio of spinners in Nathan Lyon, Ashton Agar and Jon Holland comfortably, becoming increasingly aggressive as his innings wore on. He was out for a duck second time around, looking to glide Ashton Agar fine, however the Darwin experience had already served its purpose for the captain.

Best bits from day one of Aussie intra-squad match

David Warner

It was a forgettable few days for Warner, who was bowled by one from Josh Hazlewood that kept particularly low on the first morning, before being struck on the side of the neck by the same bowler on day two and retiring hurt. In all, he scored six runs and faced 22 balls, but most importantly, despite a sore neck, he's fit and healthy to travel to Dhaka with the team on Friday. 

Warner struck on the helmet by Hazlewood

Ashton Agar

The Western Australian allrounder was this week compared to Adam Gilchrist by his state coach Justin Langer, however he was unable to back up that lofty assessment with the bat in Darwin, making 14 and one. In fact, after he returned 0-37 from 15 tidy overs in the first innings, it looked like being a fairly quiet week for Agar. That was until he utilised a wearing track nicely on the final afternoon of the contest, removing Smith and finishing with four wickets, as well as a glowing endorsement from coach Darren Lehmann, who said the 23-year-old "bowled beautifully". 

Best bits from day two of Aussie intra-squad match

Jackson Bird

A tight hip flexor prevented Bird from bowling in the first innings, but the Tasmanian produced a strong spell on the third morning of the match (across two innings), snaring the wicket of Usman Khawaja and finding some rhythm in the process. It was enough to ease concerns about his fitness, though he remains behind Blues pair Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins in the hunt for a first Test berth. 

Jackson Bird produced a strong spell on day three // Getty
Jackson Bird produced a strong spell on day three // Getty

Hilton Cartwright

Cartwright was outstanding on day one with a composed 81, looking confident against pace and spin. He missed out with a duck in the second innings, and while he took an excellent close-in catch from Nathan Lyon's off-spin, his claims on an allrounder spot might have been dealt a blow considering he wasn't used with the ball as wickets tumbled to spin on the final day.  

Cartwright took an impressive catch // Getty
Cartwright took an impressive catch // Getty

Pat Cummins

Cummins charged in for the first hour on day two, returned for some more high-octane action after lunch, and said after play he was delighted with the hit-out. As well he should be; he found pace enough to hit Glenn Maxwell with a short ball, and got through 16 overs in impressive fashion, claiming the wicket of Marcus Stoinis in the process. He also spent some valuable time in the middle with the bat, making 23 from 52 balls. 

Cummins was delighted with the hit-out // Getty
Cummins was delighted with the hit-out // Getty

Peter Handscomb

Handscomb made a sparkling hundred on the opening day of the match, showcasing his excellent play against spin and working his way through the gears as well (his last 55 runs came from 32 balls). The Victorian said he was intent on going big in Bangladesh after failing to do so in India, while he also kept wicket adroitly and remains an able back-up should any issue befall Matthew Wade. 

Handscomb shines with century in Darwin

Josh Hazlewood

Australia's iron man quick was outstanding on a pitch designed to offer him little assistance. Hazlewood recognised the need to bowl at the stumps and did some damage doing so, claiming three wickets for the match, maintaining a very healthy economy rate, and even striking Warner with a fierce short ball.

Hazlewood strikes early in warm-up

Usman Khawaja

It was a quiet match for Khawaja, who doubtless would have liked to have pushed his claims for the No.3 spot more emphatically. Khawaja made seven in the first innings and soaked up 41 balls for one in the second as he looked to spend some time in the middle. The left-hander had an outstanding 2016-17 home summer and was dropped for Shaun Marsh for the tour of India, so whether he returns to the key first drop position will be one of the most interesting selection questions heading into the first Test. 

It was a quiet match for Khawaja // Getty
It was a quiet match for Khawaja // Getty

Nathan Lyon

Lyon was economical and often threatening in two innings that garnered him match figures of 4-53 in 23 overs. The offie is set to overtake Richie Benaud as Australia's second-most prolific spinner of all time in Bangladesh and his confidence and consistency reflects that lofty standing, while he also seems to be better for his improved performances in India and the increasing faith captain Smith has shown in him. 

Economical and often threatening // Getty
Economical and often threatening // Getty

Glenn Maxwell

Maxwell made a patient 45 alongside Smith in the first innings, fending off Cummins and picking off runs against the spinners in a knock that reinforced a more mature temperament that is beginning to serve him well in longer-form cricket. The Victorian backed it up with a top score of 31 in the second innings, again playing spin expertly until losing his wicket to a reverse sweep, and looks well placed to build on his maiden Test hundred in the India series. 

Maxwell shared a good stand with Smith // Getty
Maxwell shared a good stand with Smith // Getty

Matthew Renshaw

Another of the top three to have a quiet match, Renshaw returned scores of six (25) and 21 (42), losing his wicket to Lyon in both innings while playing and missing to pace occasionally as well. Yet the left-hander is an unflustered presence at the top of the order, and while he didn't produce the big scores demanded of him in India, his focus on the sweep shot and his willingness to bide his time through difficult periods should serve him well in Bangladesh. 

Australia's top three had a quiet match // Getty
Australia's top three had a quiet match // Getty

Mitch Swepson

The young Queensland leggie continues to demonstrate perseverance and his stock leg break certainly has the ability to bite. He bounced back from a veritable hammering in the first innings (0-94 from 13) to return tidy figures of 0-34 from 10 overs in the second, and was unlucky not to have claimed a wicket or two as the occasional miss-hit fell frustratingly close to fieldsmen. 

Swepson bounced back in the second innings // Getty
Swepson bounced back in the second innings // Getty

Matthew Wade

The 'keeper-batsman looked sharp behind the stumps and was generally very tidy, though scores of 14 and four were far from the ideal batting preparation for Australia's No.7. More positively, Wade will likely take confidence from a solid showing on the India tour and has been working overtime with new fielding coach Brad Haddin, the duo putting in a lot of one-on-one time throughout the week in Darwin that should hold the 'keeper in good stead. 

Wade celebrates a wicket with Jon Holland // Getty
Wade celebrates a wicket with Jon Holland // Getty

Australia in Bangladesh 2017

Australia squad: Steve Smith (c), David Warner (vc), Ashton Agar, Jackson Bird, Hilton Cartwright, Pat Cummins, Peter Handscomb, Josh Hazlewood, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Glenn Maxwell, Matthew Renshaw, Mitchell Swepson, Matthew Wade.

Bangladesh squad (preliminary): Tamim Iqbal, Imrul Kayes, Soumya Sarkar, Mushfiqur Rahim, Shakib Al Hasan, Sabbir Rahman, Mashrafe Bin Mortaza, Mahmudullah Riyad, Liton Kumar Das, Mominul Haque, Mehedi Hasan, Taijul Islam, Mustafizur Rahman, Taskin Ahmed, Subhashish Roy, Kamrul Islam Rabbi, Rubel Hossain, Nurul Hasan, Sanjamul Islam, Mosaddek Hossain Saikat, Mohammad Saifuddin, Anamul Haque, Abul Hasan Raju, Al Amin Hossain, Nasir Hossain, Muktar Ali, Tanbir Haider, Saqlain Sajib, Shafiul Islam.


11-17 August Australia pre-tour training camp, Darwin


18 August Australia arrive


22-23 August Tour match,Fatullah


27-31 August First Test, Dhaka


4-8 September Second Test, Chittagong