Former Australia National Cricket Team batsman Tom Moody has called for the inclusion of young spinner Todd Murphy in the playing XI for the fifth and final Test of the Ashes 2023.
Murphy played his first Ashes Test at Headingley in Leeds after Nathan Lyon was ruled out of the series due to injury. It seemed the team were not confident in his abilities as he bowled just 7.3 overs in the first innings and 2 overs in the second innings.
Also read: AUS vs ENG: “We definitely got out of jail” – Cameron Green on Manchester test washout
Todd Murphy was left out of the playing XI for the fourth Test at Old Trafford in Manchester as Australia opted to go with three top-line pacers and two all-rounders in Cameron Green and Mitchell Marsh. The decision not to have a spinner backfired as they conceded 592 in just 107.4 overs in the only innings England batted.
Meanwhile, Tom Moody has said Australia’s bowling attack lacked balance in the fourth test and urged Australia to bring Murphy back to the team. He admitted that Murphy is not Nathan Lyon, but added that Lyon is not Shane Warne either.
“I know they would have had their various reasons for not playing Murphy, whether it was the fact that the weather was potentially on the horizon, but that’s no guarantee. That would have looked pretty stupid if it had failed,” Moody told ESPNcricinfo.
“To me, the attack seemed to lack balance. Murphy is an exciting young bowler. He’s not Nathan Lyon, but Nathan Lyon isn’t Shane Warne either. Murphy needs to create his own path and have his own journey; he has already started it and has done it quite successfully.
“I’d be surprised if he doesn’t come on the side just to create that balance, but also give the team better combinations for Pat Cummins to lean into. In that fourth Test match, it was almost like he was looking around the pitch for options, and he was almost looking in the mirror all the time.”
Also Read: AUS vs ENG: England announce team for Ashes 5th Test 2023; Keep the same players
Tom Moody wants Australia to drop Cameron Green
Tom Moody further said Australia should pick Mitchell Marsh as the only all-rounder in the playing XI and drop Green to make way for spinner Murphy. He elaborated:
“I think playing both all-rounders is a luxury, and for me, at this stage, Mitch Marsh is the one who looks like he can influence the game, which he has already done since coming back with confidence.
“There’s no question that Cameron Green has a noticeable advantage, but the pick here and now is Mitch Marsh. There are very few players in the history of the game who haven’t had hiccups, or been left out of sides by team combinations or form or whatever. In any case, it’s probably something I could do to him. [Green] the world of good.”
David Warner has struggled so far in Ashes and has only recorded a score of over fifty. The leadoff hitter has posted scores of 9, 36, 66, 25, 4, 1, 32 and 28 in 8 innings. Many have called for Warner to be removed for the fifth task, but Moody believes he will be retained for the Ashes finale.
“The way I see it, the decision to play him at Old Trafford was almost to commit to him for the series. If they were going to make a change, that was the time to do it, but clearly they felt he had done enough.”
Australia lead the series 2-1 after winning at Edgbaston and Lord’s and have retained the Ashes urn. The Ashes finale will take place at The Kennington Oval in London from July 27-31.
Also read: AUS vs ENG: Nathan Lyon feels Australia made no mistake by replacing Todd Murphy with Cameron Green