Australian selection policy lacks clarity: Graeme Smith

January 3rd, 2009 - 5:49 pm ICT by IANS  

Sydney, Jan 3 (IANS) South Africa captain Graeme Smith termed Australia’s selection policy as “lacking in clarity” and also questioned the selection of fast bowler Doug Bollinger for the third and the final Test here at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG). “I think having (Ben) Hilfenhaus in Melbourne and now picking Bollinger here shows a little bit of lack of clarity in terms of where they want to go. That has surprised us. It reminds me a bit of the England tour when they carried (Chris) Tremlett around and picked Pattinson at Headingley. It’s similar to that in many ways,” Smith was quoted as saying by the Sydney Morning Herald.

“From our perspective, it just seemed that, naturally, Hilfenhaus would come in. There’s obviously a little bit of uncertainty there. Obviously, providing uncertainty in the opposition camp means you’ve played well and you’ve met the challenges you needed to. We’ll take that as a little feather in our cap on the trip.”

Bollinger made his debut Saturday in place of injured fast bowler Brett Lee for the inconsequential Test match at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG), where South Africa are targeting a 3-0 whitewash against Australia. Besides Bollinger Victorian all-rounder Andrew McDonald also earned his maiden Baggy Green cap.

This was also the first time Australia have fielded two debutants in a Test since 1999, when Adam Gilchrist and Scott Muller were chosen to play Pakistan at the Gabba.

Australian captain Ricky Ponting indicated that Bollinger would share the new ball with Peter Siddle, with Mitchell Johnson to be introduced at first change.

“It’s not often in world cricket these days that you arrive at a game and don’t know too much about the guys you’ll be facing with the new ball,” Smith said.

“It takes you back to the days at school and club cricket when there was no television. From our perspective, (Bollinger) has got a great record in domestic cricket. He’s obviously had a very good season and we’ve got as much information on him as possible,” he said.

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