Australia tour of England
Travis' bold statement to bat at the Head
Left-hander bashes tour match century to make a strong case to open the batting in upcoming ODIs
Dave Middleton at Lord's, London
10 June 2018, 08:35 AM AEST
Travis Head made a bold bid to open the batting for Australia's one-day side with a brilliant century at Lord's against Middlesex.
The knock won't earn Head a place on the famed Lord's Honours Board given the List A status of the match, but it might just be enough to earn him a starting berth against the new ball when the ODI series begins at The Oval on Wednesday.
"I enjoyed getting back up the order, getting out there and getting a hit," Head said after Australia had completed a 101-run victory.
"I felt like I've been in good form. I haven't got the runs I would have liked in the early part of the season for Worcester(shire, the county side Head has played for this northern summer) but it's nice to get out here with the boys and perform.
"I feel like I am playing really well, I've sort of been close at the start of the summer here, and I am looking forward to the (ODI) series starting."
Head's 106 from 141 balls featured nine fours and anchored the Aussie innings of 6-283 before the home side crumbled against the Aussie quicks to be all out for 182.
The win gave the Australians an undefeated start to the tour, and plenty of selection headaches for new coach Justin Langer and the touring National Selection Panel chairman Trevor Hohns.
Head, however, was fairly unequivocal when it came to his preferences.
"In white-ball cricket, every batter is going to say they will want to bat as high as they can," the South Australia captain said.
"It's awesome going out there against the new ball, two fielders out and you get the best of the wicket.
"I've done both (open and bat in middle-order). I'm happy to do whatever it takes to keep playing in the Australian cricket team.
"I feel like I can do a job with either, feel like I've done jobs with either. I'm really comfortable with how I'm going. I just need to make sure I'm playing really well and whatever role I get, do it to the best of my ability.
"If you are in form and getting runs, hopefully you'll stay there. We want guys winning games of cricket and we've got match-winners throughout the order."
Head joined Marcus Stoinis in reaching three figures on the tour, with the allrounder having posted 110 against Sussex last Thursday. Aaron Finch added 54 in the middle order at Lord's to the 78 he scored against Sussex.
D'Arcy Short hit 21 in the first match before being pinned leg-before on the back foot to spin, and had looked ominous in blitzing a quick 18 from 12 balls before he fell victim to one of the catches of the season, a stupendous effort by Nathan Sowter to reach high and across his body with his right hand to grab a catch falling away to his left.
Although Short didn't pass 21 in the two knocks, Head said he was "dangerous" and backed him to come good against England.
"He's a great asset to have, someone at the top of the order who can put a lot of pressure back on the bowling unit," Head said.
"He's done that in various forms. He's probably disappointed he hasn't got the runs in the first two games but he's definitely hitting the ball well and working really hard in the nets."
Qantas tours of England and Zimbabwe
ODI squad: Tim Paine (c), Aaron Finch (vc), Ashton Agar, Alex Carey, Travis Head, Nathan Lyon, Glenn Maxwell, Shaun Marsh, Michael Neser, Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson, D’Arcy Short, Billy Stanlake, Marcus Stoinis, Andrew Tye
England ODI squad: Eoin Morgan (c), Moeen Ali, Jonny Bairstow, Jake Ball, Sam Billings, Jos Buttler, Tom Curran, Alex Hales, Liam Plunkett, Adil Rashid, Joe Root, Jason Roy, Ben Stokes (injured), David Willey, Chris Woakes (injured), Mark Wood
T20 squad: Aaron Finch (c), Alex Carey (vc), Ashton Agar, Travis Head, Nic Maddinson, Glenn Maxwell, Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson, D’Arcy Short, Billy Stanlake, Marcus Stoinis, Mitchell Swepson, Andrew Tye, Jack Wildermuth
Qantas Tour of England
June 13: First ODI, The Oval (D/N)
June 16: Second ODI, Cardiff
June 19: Third ODI, Trent Bridge (D/N)
June 21: Fourth ODI, Durham (D/N)
June 24: Fifth ODI, Old Trafford
June 27: Only T20, Edgbaston (D/N)
Qantas T20I tri-series Tour of Zimbabwe
July 1: Zimbabwe vs Pakistan
July 2: Pakistan vs Australia
July 3: Australia vs Zimbabwe
July 4: Zimbabwe vs Pakistan
July 5: Pakistan vs Australia
July 6: Australia vs Zimbabwe
July 8: Final