A new week begins and the headless chicken selection table continues on their merry way, hopefully soon to be sent to KFC to be fried up using the Colonel secret recipe. Usman Khawaja, is the latest player to benefit from this selection table, a well deserved selection at that but the squad picked by the selectors is once again the butt of all jokes.
Steven Smith who was essentially picked in the reserve batsmen spot when the 13 man squad was announced, he can now being seen as the Marcus North backup unless the selectors have changed their minds again and swapped him back to a bowling all rounder. There in lies the first problem, given Shane Watson is already the all rounder in the side and if he got injured then Steven Smith more than likely wouldn't replace him then why is Smith in the side just to replace one batsmen? If he is good enough to replace North in the side then he should be good enough to replace any batsmen.
We should be picking players based on their batting ability first, if they bowl then that is an extra but it certainly shouldn't be the reason for picking a player. I'm more than comfortable with Steven Smith's batting but the selectors aren't as they showed with Paine batting above him. So if that is the case then he shouldn't have been picked in the squad in the first place and Khawaja should have been named in the squad to begin with.
Once again this shows the selectors love affair for having a spinning all rounder in the side, they spectacularly dropped Simon Katich for Andrew Symonds after he made 125 and 77 not out in Steve Waugh's final Test match. The reason given was the selectors wanted an off spinning all rounder. Since then Marcus North has joined the queue with his off spinners preferred over David Hussey whose First Class average is still well above 50 compared to North's one which is a touch over 40.
The second problem relates to the previous problem in picking our best batsmen. The selectors seem comfortable enough having a batting order of Clarke, Hussey and Smith but when it reads Hussey, North and Smith they aren't so comfortable. So if that is the case then skipping the first problem where Smith shouldn't be in the side, then clearly there is a lack of confidence in Hussey and North. If we go back in time and replace them with say Steve Waugh and Darren Lehmann, would the selectors then be uncomfortable with picking Smith to replace Clarke in the side? More than likely not which means we aren't 100% confident with Hussey and North, if that is the case then they shouldn't be in the side.
So as we move on from the week where Doherty was essentially given his Ashes debut, to now having the selectors picking our reserve batsmen to replace only one player in the side and the continued love affair with a spinning all rounder. Just to point out I'm not against the selection of Khawaja as that is one of the few good calls being made lately and I'm confident he can get the job done if needed, this is once again an attack on the selectors.