Australia set to field unchanged XI for Boxing Day Test
Australia are set to have an unchanged playing XI for the impending Boxing Day Test in Melbourne. Head coach Justin Langer confirmed the development, stating the Aussies will stick to the same combination unless there are last-minute changes. He also said that star opener David Warner is yet to recover, and could return to the side later in the series. Here is more.
Here is what Langer stated. "I'd be a pretty courageous man to change the XI for this Test match after the last one," said Langer. "At this stage unless something happens over the next few days - and it can happen in the world we live in - we'll go in with the same XI, I'd say."
Warner hasn't recovered from a groin injury that he sustained in the ODI series against India. Although he has arrived in MCG, he will only regroup with the squad only ahead of the third Test. In his absence, the likes of Joe Burns and Matthew Wade will likely continue as the makeshift openers. The duo looked comfortable in Australia's run-chase during the Adelaide Test.
Speaking on Warner's status, Langer said, "Davey had a good hit yesterday, he's a bit way off with the running. He wants to make sure he's 100% fit so he gets great energy personally and as a group they get energy out of that."
Australia presently lead the four-match Test series 1-0, after they handed India a crushing defeat in the series opener. Notably, the visitors recorded their lowest Test total in the second innings as Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins rattled their batting line-up. Now, the hosts would want to win the Boxing Day Test, which they lost the last time around (in 2018/19).
Langer said Australia are determined to bounce back from the loss they endured two years ago. "I think we're a very different team. we've come a long way in two years, we're now playing very good cricket, we've got confidence," he added. "We know that in the first innings in Australia we are looking to score 400 in the first innings."