Domain Tests v India
Finch updates fitness ahead of Boxing Day
Opener says he’s fit to play his first Test at the MCG despite being forced to retire hurt in Perth
20 December 2018, 09:16 AM AEST
Aaron Finch's healing powers have him ready to play in the Boxing Day Test but he's not expecting similar miracles from the MCG pitch.
Finch was in good spirits as Australia's squad departed Perth on Wednesday, having defeated India in the second Domain Test to level the series.
The opener copped a brutal hit from Indian quick Mohammed Shami in Perth, injuring his right index finger so badly he was forced to retire hurt.
Finch was cleared of a fracture but News Corp reported the wound was so severe, Finch had bone protruding through his finger.
It was the third time this summer that he’d copped a blow on the same finger having been hit there twice during training sessions.
Finch lasted just one ball upon resuming his innings on Monday and failed to take the field during India's second dig, but the fact Australia named an unchanged squad for the final two Tests suggests he is in no doubt to play on Boxing Day.
"It's a finger that I've broken before in Sri Lanka a few years ago," Finch said.
"To have it hit three times pretty solid in a month, it just keeps blowing up.
"But it'll be no problem for the game."
Australia and India's fast bowlers enjoyed a spicy Perth Stadium pitch, which offered plenty of pace and bounce.
The respective pace attacks are unlikely to receive anywhere near as much assistance at the MCG, where two of the past four Tests have ended in a draw.
Criticism about the MCG pitch peaked a year ago, when the venue was officially put on notice by the International Cricket Council for its "poor" pitch.
The MCG has since attempted to make its deck more lively but recent evidence suggests it will be a far more batsman-friendly venue than Perth.
There have been five centuries scored in three MCG matches this Sheffield Shield season, headlined by Marcus Harris' unbeaten 250 that sealed his Test call-up.
"I assume there'll be a little bit more grass on it," Victoria native Finch said.
"I haven't played a Shield game there but the boys said there has been a little bit more grass on it and it's seamed around a little bit but it's still been on the slower side.
"I don't expect that to change a hell of a lot. They're still the same drop-ins from the last 10 or 12 years ... I'm sure they're trying a different method though."
Domain Test Series v India
Dec 6-10: India won by 31 runs
Dec 14-18: Australia won by 146 runs
Dec 26-30: Third Test, MCG
Jan 3-7: Fourth Test, SCG
Australia squad: Tim Paine (c, wk), Josh Hazlewood (vc), Mitch Marsh (vc), Pat Cummins, Aaron Finch, Peter Handscomb, Marcus Harris, Travis Head, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Shaun Marsh, Peter Siddle, Mitchell Starc, Archie Schiller
India squad: Virat Kohli (c), Murali Vijay, KL Rahul, Mayank Agarwal, Cheteshwar Pujara, Ajinkya Rahane, Hardik Pandya, Hanuma Vihari, Rohit Sharma, Rishabh Pant (wk), Parthiv Patel (wk), Ravi Ashwin, Ravi Jadeja, Kuldeep Yadav, Mohammed Shami, Ishant Sharma, Umesh Yadav, Jasprit Bumrah, Bhuvneshwar Kumar