India v Australia ODIs - Men's
'I'm picking Finch every day of the week'
Former Australia coach backs Aaron Finch to be in the ODI XI at the World Cup in the UK
7 March 2019, 02:29 PM AEST
Australian ODI captain Aaron Finch should be a World Cup lock despite his run of poor form, says his former coach Darren Lehmann.
Much has been made of Finch's place in the side given the opener hasn't passed 50 in his last 21 white-ball knocks for Australia.
The Victorian showed glimpses of his best with a crisp 37 in the side's most recent loss to India in Nagpur but Lehmann says his current form is almost irrelevant.
"The World Cup's not now is it," Lehmann mused at the announcement of his return to coaching with the Brisbane Heat on Thursday.
"I'd give him plenty of time prove he's right and once he's in form I'm having him at the top of the order.
"I'm picking Aaron Finch every day of the week ... people forget what happened in the last World Cup. They (Finch and David Warner) dominated."
Lehmann will return to the coaching ranks for the first time since stepping down following last year's Cape Town ball-tampering scandal after signing a two-year deal with the Big Bash League franchise.
He said he had remained in contact with banned trio Cameron Bancroft, Steve Smith and Warner and that he was "looking forward to them playing for Australia again".
That could be as early as the first Ashes Test in August, where he tipped Bancroft to earn a ticket after an impressive return to the Sheffield Shield arena.
The fledgling Test opener has scored 138 not out, 86, 11 and 52 for Western Australia since his return from suspension, soaking up 621 balls in his first game back.
"I'd have him in my Ashes squad," Lehmann said when asked to assess Bancroft's prospects.
"One thing he does do is bat time and that's what they'll need in England to negate (Stuart) Broad and (Jimmy) Anderson and the like."
Qantas Tour of India
First T20: Australia won by three wickets
Second T20: Australia won by seven wickets
First ODI: India won by six wickets
Second ODI: India won by eight runs
Third ODI: March 8, Ranchi
Fourth ODI: March 10, Mohali
Fifth ODI: March 13, Delhi