Drop Aaron Finch and open with Usman Khawaja: Pointing’s advice for rattled Australia

first_img Rohan Sen SydneyDecember 31, 2018UPDATED: December 31, 2018 14:20 IST Aaron Finch’s failure at the top has contributed to Australia’s downfall in this series (AP Photo)HIGHLIGHTSFinch has managed just 97 runs in the series so far at an average of just over 16Khawaja has performed a little better with 167 runs at 27.83 with a highest score of 72Ponting also wants Australia to include batting all-rounder Marnus Labuchagne in the playing XIFormer Australia captain Ricky Ponting is of the opinion that the home side should drop Aaron Finch from the playing XI for the fourth and final Test against India in Sydney starting January 3.Ponting feels that Finch has been given a long enough rope to prove his credentials as an opener in the Test team but he has failed miserably which is why the Aussies need to think differently for the New Year Test at the Sydney Cricket Ground.Ponting wants Australia to include uncapped all-rounder Marnus Labuchagne in the playing XI and open the batting with the in-form Usman Khawaja in Sydney.”I’ve seen Labuschagne has come into the line-up so to me straightaway that means Finch has to miss out and Usman will open the batting, I’d imagine,” Ponting told cricket.com.au.”That’s how it looks – Labuschagne probably bats four, (Travis) Head five and Mitch Marsh six – I think that’s the way they’re going to line up. I can’t really think what else they can do.”The selectors and the captain and coach have obviously had a long chat about what they want and what they expect. We’ll see how they line up,” Ponting was quoted as saying by cricket.com.au.Finch has registered scores of 27, 0, 28, 11, 50, 25, 8 and 3 for a total of 97 runs in the series so far at an average of just over 16.Khawaja has performed a little better with 167 runs at 27.83 with a highest score of 72.The SCG is traditionally Australia’s most spin-friendly Test venue and Ponting believes Labuschagne could play a role as the second spinner behind Nathan Lyon.advertisement”He looked impressive a couple of times in the UAE in the Tests over there. (He) bowled well, which is something they’re probably thinking about for the SCG Test as well. To be honest I haven’t seen a lot of him I’ll reserve my judgment until I see a little more,” Ponting added.Through a chaotic few months and in the years building up to his maiden Test tour Queenslander Marnus Labuschagne has never stopped believing in the Baggy Green | @AdamBurnett09 https://t.co/l5A76UFlZo pic.twitter.com/6yFUtNbH8tcricket.com.au (@cricketcomau) December 31, 2018The most successful Australian skipper also pointed out that the batsmen are mental mistakes while technical issues have also crept into their game.”There are mental mistakes being made and a lot of technical issues that need to be addressed pretty quickly. But they’re not going to find those (answers) in three days.”So it’s going to come down more to the mental side of things and we’ll see if they’re up for the battle or not in Sydney. There’s a still a series on the line being 2-1 down, they have to win in Sydney so let’s hope they respond really well,” Ponting concluded.With India 2-1 up in the four-match series, the focus now shifts to the fourth Test in Sydney which will offer more spin to the tweakers giving the tourists an added advantage as Ravichandran Ashwin is close to match-fitness and should return to the side for the New Year Test.Also Read | Virat Kohli and Cheteshwar Pujara difference between India-Australia: Justin LangerAlso Read | India the real deal now, can combat in Australia, South Africa and New Zealand: Allan BorderAlso Read | This is the best Indian bowling attack to come to Australia: Ricky PontingFor sports news, updates, live scores and cricket fixtures, log on to indiatoday.in/sports. Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter for Sports news, scores and updates.Get real-time alerts and all the news on your phone with the all-new India Today app. Download from Post your comment Do You Like This Story? Awesome! Now share the story Too bad. Tell us what you didn’t like in the comments Posted byrohan sen Tags :Follow India vs AustraliaFollow Sydney TestFollow New Year TestFollow Aaron FinchFollow Usman KhawajaFollow Ricky Ponting Drop Aaron Finch and open with Usman Khawaja: Pointing’s advice for rattled AustraliaIndia vs Australia: Aaron Finch has struggled with the bat in the three Tests so far and is likely to be dropped from the playing XI, according to Ricky Ponting.advertisementlast_img read more

Four charged by Kenyan court over Westgate mall attack

first_imgFOUR MEN HAVE been charged in connection with last month’s Westgate mall massacre.Somalia’s Al-Qaeda linked Shebab claimed responsibility for the September 21st attack in which at least 67 people were killed in Kenyan capital of Nairobi.The charge sheet read that “the accused persons carried out a terrorist attack at Westgate Shopping Mall on September 21 by supporting a terrorist group”.Not guilty pleaAll pleaded not guilty to the charges, which also included entering Kenya illegally and obtaining false identification documents.None are accused of being the gunmen in the mall.The four, who are all ethnic Somalis, are Mohammed Ahmed Abdi, Liban Abdullah, Adan Adan and Hussein Hassan.Some of those charged were arrested in Kenya’s northwestern desert refugee camp of Kakuma, a vast settlement home to over 125,000 refugees from across the region, including Somalia.Further investigationsThe suspects, who had no legal representation, were remanded in custody for one week after the prosecution asked for more time for further investigations.All the gunmen in the Westgate attack — totalling just four, not the dozen that security forces had initially reported — are understood to have died during the four-day siege.Interpol is assisting Kenya in trying to identify four bodies suspected to be the gunmen, police said last week.The Kenyan Red Cross has said some 20 people are still missing, and there are fears more bodies could be found in the wreckage of the mall.Link to NorwayDetectives are continuing to investigate a possible link to Norway, with Ndegwa Muhoro, head of Kenya’s Police Criminal Investigation Department, saying last week that a telephone call was made to the country from the mall during the attack.A Norwegian citizen of Somali origin is suspected of being one of the attackers.- © AFP, 2013Read: ‘White Widow’ Lewthwaite ‘was not part of the attackers’ – Kenyan police >More: Son of former Kenyan ambassador to Ireland killed in Nairobi siege >last_img read more