Jake Fraser-McGurk called into Australia’s T20I squad for Perth match

Jake Fraser-McGurk could make his T20I debut on Tuesday having been drafted into Australia’s squad for the final match against West Indies in Perth.
Fraser-McGurk and South Australia quick Wes Agar will bolster the group with Josh Hazlewood having returned home following the second game in Adelaide to prepare for the New Zealand tour.
Xavier Bartlett had already been added to the squad for Perth, so would appear a good chance to make his T20I debut in place of Hazlewood after a terrific start to his ODI career where he claimed consecutive four-wicket hauls against West Indies.
Fraser-McGurk also made his ODI debut in that series and caught the eye with his aggressive approach, especially in Canberra where he smashed 41 off 18 balls.
Australia’s selectors may look to rest other players in Perth which could open the door for Fraser-McGurk. There is the enticing prospect of him and Glenn Maxwell being in the same XI although Maxwell could be in line to sit out having revealed the initial plan was for him to rest him in Adelaide before he talked the selectors around and proceeded to pile up a 50-ball hundred in front of his parents.

“Originally I was supposed to not be playing, I was going to be rested,” Maxwell said. “I sort of talked them into [it by going,] ‘Yeah, I wouldn’t mind playing this one, my family’s going to be here’, so they changed their mind, which was nice. I just thought, ‘Imagine if I was rested for this game, they made the effort to come over here’, but they had a Barossa tour yesterday so they were pretty happy.”

Aaron Hardie, who plays for Western Australia, is also part of the squad but has not yet played in the series and would be a popular inclusion for the home crowd.
Australia have no shortage of top-order batting options in white-ball cricket so Fraser-McGurk, who hit a world-record 29-ball one-day hundred earlier this season, is not in the frame for this year’s T20 World Cup but his progress is being closely monitored.

“We feel like we’ve got some pretty good options at the top of the order in that T20 side,” national selector George Bailey said last week. “Even then there’s a couple of other guys who have batted in the middle or have batted at the top in T20 cricket who can cover as well. The talent’s there [with Fraser-McGurk], he’s one we’re certainly keeping a close eye on.”

Travis Head and Steven Smith will return to the T20I squad for the New Zealand tour, while Matt Short is also due to be part of that trip having missed the West Indies matches due to injury, with Head currently favoured to partner David Warner at the top for the World Cup.

Meanwhile, Agar previously played two ODIs against West Indies in 2021. He took two wickets in four matches for Adelaide Strikers in the BBL before losing his place in the side. His state, South Australia, which Fraser-McGurk also plays for, are not in contention for the Marsh Cup final with the last round of games taking place the day after the Perth T20I.

There are currently a number of quicks nursing injuries with Lance Morris (side), Nathan Ellis (rib) and Sean Abbott (shoulder) sidelined although Ellis is due to return for the New Zealand series. Pat Cummins and Mitchell Starc have been rested for this series.

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