Magellan Ashes 2017-18

Younger Marsh back in Ashes Test mix

Allrounder feeling confident after working his way back to form following shoulder surgery


7 December 2017, 12:30 PM AEST

I didn't think it would happen this soon: Marsh

With older brother Shaun providing the perfect example, allrounder Mitch Marsh is ready to make his mark at Test level if called into the Australian team for the third Magellan Ashes clash in Perth.

The oft-maligned Marsh has yet to live up to his potential with bat and ball in 21 Tests dating back to 2014.

The 26-year-old was forced home midway through the Qantas Tour of India earlier this year to undergo shoulder surgery, but is now back bowling off his long run-up.

A recent Sheffield Shield knock of 141 batting at No.4 for WA clearly impressed the Australian selectors, who included him in the 13-man Test squad in place of swing bowler Chadd Sayers.

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Australia are expected to name an unchanged side for the third Test, although Marsh is an option to replace Peter Handscomb, especially if the selectors decide they need a fourth pace bowling option at the WACA Ground.

"I'm feeling really confident in my game at the moment so it's a great feeling," Marsh told reporters in Melbourne on Thursday.

"As an allrounder in the Australian team with our attack I'm obviously not going to be bowling 30 to 40 overs a game.

"But I've worked hard over the last eight months to get my body into a position where I'm now playing again as an allrounder so that's really exciting."

Marsh admitted he had lost confidence with the bat in his most recent stint in the Test side.

"But that's all part of playing Test match cricket, playing cricket at the highest level," he said.

"You go through troughs and right now I'm feeling really confident in my game."

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In the past, Marsh acknowledged he had spent too much time worrying about how he was perceived by critics and how other contenders for his spot in the lineup were performing.

Seeing his older brother rise above similar issues to make a match-winning century in the second Test against England had been a major boost.

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"When you're playing cricket for Australia there are a lot of distractions outside the inner sanctum but (Shaun) is just really concentrating right now and it's great to see," said Marsh.

"Last year I wasn't performing at my best and in the game of cricket you can get pretty down on yourself.

"I've come to realise that the game of cricket is just a game. I'm here to play and I'm here to do my best for the team.

"As long as I prepare well and do everything I can I know now that I'll be able to do a job for Australia."

Marsh said he had been able to watch most of his brother's Adelaide century while in Melbourne with the Western Australia team and had been quick to congratulate his sibling.

"We were playing at stages throughout his innings but I pretty much got to watch most of it.

"We came off at the end of our day's play and we were sitting in changerooms and pretty pumped.

"I got the chance to speak to him, he would have had a lot of calls and texts so I just sent him a text telling him I love him and well done."

2017-18 International Fixtures

Magellan Ashes Series

Australia Test squad: Steve Smith (c), David Warner (vc), Cameron Bancroft, Usman Khawaja, Peter Handscomb, Shaun Marsh, Mitchell Marsh, Tim Paine (wk), Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood, Jackson Bird.

England Test squad: Joe Root (c), James Anderson (vc), Moeen Ali, Jonny Bairstow, Jake Ball, Gary Ballance, Stuart Broad, Alastair Cook, Mason Crane, Tom Curran, Ben Foakes, Dawid Malan, Craig Overton, Ben Stokes, Mark Stoneman, James Vince, Chris Woakes.

First Test Australia won by 10 wickets. Scorecard

Second Test Australia won by 120 runs (Day-Night). Scorecard

Third Test WACA Ground, December 14-18. Tickets

Fourth Test MCG, December 26-30. Tickets

Fifth Test SCG, January 4-8 (Pink Test). Tickets

Gillette ODI Series v England

First ODI MCG, January 14. Tickets

Second ODI Gabba, January 19. Tickets

Third ODI SCG, January 21. Tickets

Fourth ODI Adelaide Oval, January 26. Tickets

Fifth ODI Perth Stadium, January 28. Tickets

Prime Minister's XI

PM's XI v England Manuka Oval, February 2. Tickets

Gillette T20 trans-Tasman Tri-Series

First T20I Australia v NZ, SCG, February 3. Tickets

Second T20I – Australia v England, Blundstone Arena, February 7. Tickets

Third T20I – Australia v England, MCG, February 10. Tickets

Fourth T20I – NZ v England, Wellington, February 14

Fifth T20I – NZ v Australia, Eden Park, February 16

Sixth T20I – NZ v England, Seddon Park, February 18

Final – TBC, Eden Park, February 21