Scott Boland has been selected over Michael Neser and will play his first Test in England, as Australia’s squad for the ICC World Test Championship final against India at The Oval is nearly finalized. Boland, whose bowling average of 13.42 is the highest among all Test bowlers, is the only bowler to have bowled at least 1000 deliveries since the turn of the 20th century. He has surpassed Michael Neser to secure the final bowling position in Australia’s XI.
Due to Josh Hazlewood’s injury, Neser has been added to Australia’s official 15-man squad for the ICC World Test Championship final, which begins on Wednesday. Boland will join Pat Cummins, Cameron Green, Mitchell Starc, and Nathan Lyon in Australia’s anticipated bowling attack due to his extraordinary performance in seven Tests since his remarkable debut in the most recent Ashes series in 2021–22.
Cummins acknowledged that the Australian fast bowler is “very close” to being rated alongside the “big three” in the selection order, but he disputes the notion of a “pecking order.”
“We encourage everyone to bowl slightly differently. Scott is a seam bowler with a decent length, but he offers something slightly different to Joshy (Hazlewood), and Starc (Starc) is a bit different as a left-handed bowler. Therefore, I believe there is never a hierarchical order. You consider the three players you want to play with,” Cummins was quoted as saying by Cricket Australia.
Boland appears attractive whenever he bowls: Cummins
Cummins reassured Boland that he did not need to change his bowling technique, which has made him so effective, particularly at home.
“Because the ball speaks a bit more in England, I’ve witnessed players in the past get too caught up in trying to take wickets on every ball because the ball abruptly swings and seams. Someone like Scotty (Boland) has a simple game plan: hit your good areas and remain there all day, with the hope that the ball will do the rest of the work. He has had several bowls over here and has been looking fine. However, he looks excellent whenever he bowls,” he continued.
Earlier this year, Boland participated in the first game of Australia’s Test tour of India before the team switched to three spinners for the remainder of the series. In 2018, the 34-year-old only previously performed in the United Kingdom during an Indigenous tour.