Marsh One-Day Cup 2019
Finch hungry for success in one-day tournament
Australia’s ODI captain primed to make a big impact after missing last year’s title in a massive boost for defending champions Victoria
13 September 2019, 02:36 PM AEST
Australia one-day skipper Aaron Finch says he is “ready to go” for the revamped Marsh One-Day Cup this summer after a gruelling winter.
Finch has returned from England after leading Australia to the semi-finals of the World Cup and representing Surrey in county cricket.
The 32-year-old has been included in Victoria’s 15-man squad for the opening two games of the tournament in a significant boost for the defending champions.
Finch was absent from his state’s one-day and Sheffield Shield triumphs last season because of international duties, but Victoria has five games before Australia’s T20 series against Sri Lanka starts on October 27.
“When you’re playing for Australia, you’d never give that up for anything, but the success Victoria’s had – especially over the last seven or eight years – has been extraordinary,” Finch said.
“It’s just a great place to come back and play and be around the boys.”
Finch led from the front at the World Cup, hammering 507 runs at the top of the order, making him the tournament’s seventh-most prolific batsman.
But the hard-hitting right-hander, who treated himself to “four or five days” off after the World Cup, said his performances for Surrey fell well short of his expectations.
Finch did, however, blast the seventh century of his T20 career in England’s domestic competition last month, belting nine sixes in an unbeaten knock of 102.
“My performances probably weren’t as good as I would expect of myself and probably what they had been in the last couple of years,” he said.
“I did start the T20 Blast reasonably slow, and I think a bit of that was a bit of fatigue after the World Cup.
“There were a couple of little breaks in between games here and there. I got some runs towards the end, but not enough to squeeze us (Surrey) into that final four.”
But Finch said he had recharged and was “feeling really good” as he looks to help the Peter Handscomb-led Victoria to back-to-back 50-over titles.
With Marcus Harris involved in Australia’s ongoing Ashes series and Cameron White no longer holding a contract, more responsibility is set to be shouldered by Victoria’s next generation of talent.
While Handscomb, Finch, Glenn Maxwell and Nic Maddinson will need to do plenty of heavy lifting with the bat, Finch is excited about what the likes of Mackenzie Harvey and Sam Harper could deliver.
The pair impressed for Melbourne Renegades in the KFC Big Bash League last season and will be hoping to make an impact in the 50-over format.
“I think we’re really blessed with some talented young players,” Finch said.
“We saw Mackenzie Harvey for most of the Big Bash last year – he’s just going to keep getting better and better.
“Sam Harper, it was probably his breakthrough Big Bash season last year as well.
“When you’ve got young guys like that coming through, they’re so exciting, they’re dynamic, to see how much they’ve improved in the off-season is special.”
Victoria will start their Marsh One-Day Cup campaign against Western Australia at the WACA on September 21.
The one-day competition will be played in three separate blocks this season, with the final to be staged on November 26.