Marsh set for Shield return, Tigers drop McDermott

Western Australia skipper to play his first Sheffield Shield match in almost two years with the state one win away from consecutive home finals

West Australian captain Mitch Marsh is set to play his first Marsh Sheffield Shield match in almost two years after a successful return from ankle surgery last Sunday.

Marsh has been named in WA's 13-player squad for their clash with Tasmania at the WACA Ground beginning on Thursday, a rematch of last week's fixture in Hobart which Western Australia won by a crushing 383 runs.

The 31-year-old played his first match since late November in WA's six-wicket Marsh One-Day Cup over the Tigers at Blundstone Arena, but failed to trouble the scorers in an otherwise successful comeback from keyhole surgery on a troublesome left ankle the sidelined him for the entire KFC BBL|12 season.

Marsh will play as a batter only in this week's four-day fixture where a win will secure WA hosting rights for the Sheffield Shield final the second straight season.

The right-hander last played a first-class match for WA in April 2021, coincidentally against the same opposition.

"It's been a solid three months of rehab … I've had no setbacks which is always ideal when you're coming back from surgery so I'm really looking forward to getting back into it," said Marsh ahead of last Sunday's Marsh Cup match.

Also included in the reigning champions' squad is one-day captain Ashton Turner who is in line to play his first Shield match since October 2020.

Turner, a middle-order stalwart of white-ball teams for WA and the Perth Scorchers, blasted 167 from just 174 deliveries, including six sixes and 11 fours, in a Toyota Second XI match against South Australia last week.

The 30-year-old's return to the side is less certain but his 4-41 in that second XI fixture could make him an attractive spinning option should WA opt for an all-out pace attack.

Image Id: DFE9EE23C7C945F696D39260BC027BC8 Image Caption: Marsh last played during Australia's ODI series against England in November // Getty

Veteran batter Shaun Marsh drops out of the squad due to a finger injury sustained against SA in round seven, as has allrounder Marcus Stoinis to begin his preparations for Australia's ODI series in India following the conclusion of the fourth Border-Gavaskar Test.

Tasmania have dropped Ben McDermott following a lean run of scores, and he may have played his last match for the Tigers with the 28-year-old being linked with a move back to Queensland during the offseason.

"He's one of my close mates and I know he's hurting from missing this game and potentially the last game," Tigers allrounder Beau Webster said today before departing for Perth.

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"But I'm sure he'll bounce back, he's a world class player, we've seen what he can do in both white and red ball and I'm sure he'll be fine."

Veteran quick Peter Siddle, who himself could be heading home to Victoria at the end of the 2022-23 summer, has been rested and will also miss the match, with young allrounder Lawrence Neil-Smith and Mac Wright added to Tasmania's 13-player squad.

NSW vice-captain Jason Sangha has been omitted in other squad changes for the penultimate round of the Sheffield Shield season, with dashing right-hander Ollie Davies and Canberra-raised Blake MacDonald in line for first-class debuts in the Blues clash with Victoria in Albury.

Allrounder Jack Edwards has also earned a recall. Fast bowlers Sean Abbott and Ben Dwarshuis have been rested, with Abbott also part of Australia's ODI tour of India.

NSW will be out to avoid their worst winless streak in the state's 130-year Sheffield Shield history after equalling their record of 10 matches in last week's five-wicket loss to Queensland.

Their current streak of five losses and five draws stretches back to February last year.

WA squad v Tasmania (WACA): Mitchell Marsh (c), Cameron Bancroft, Hilton Cartwright, Cameron Gannon, Aaron Hardie, Josh Inglis, Matt Kelly, Joel Paris, Corey Rocchiccioli, Charlie Stobo, Ashton Turner, Sam Whiteman, Teague Wyllie

Tasmania squad v WA (WACA): Jackson Bird, Jake Doran, Nathan Ellis, Jarrod Freeman, Caleb Jewell, Riley Meredith, Lawrence Neil-Smith, Tim Paine, Jordan Silk (c), Charlie Wakim, Tim Ward, Beau Webster, Mac Wright

NSW squad v Victoria (Albury): Trent Copeland, Ollie Davies, Jack Edwards, Matthew Gilkes, Chris Green, Liam Hatcher, Moises Henriques, Daniel Hughes, Hayden Kerr, Blake MacDonald, Blake Nikitaras, Kurtis Patterson (c), Chris Tremain