Home > Features >

George Bailey gets another chance in ODIs to prove Test credentials

Australia's middle-order batsman George Bailey struggled to make an impression in the Ashes 2013-14 series against England © Getty Images
Australia’s George Bailey struggled for runs in the Ashes 2013-14 series against England © Getty Images

George Bailey is the only player whose position in the Australian team has been questioned after Ashes 2013-14 win. Bailey, who remained a part of the unchanged Australian sides for five Ashes Tests, now faces a tough competition from Alex Doolan to save his place for the tour of South Africa. The One-Day International (ODI) series against England provides an opportunity to Bailey to strengthen his claim for a place, says Devarchit Varma.

When a severely-depleted Australian side landed on the Indian shores for a seven-match One-Day International (ODI) series last year, not many tipped the tourists to fight as hard as they did. The 31-year-old George Bailey led his side with example and emerged as one of the top run-getters. However, there was a motivating factor which pushed the Australian side to give it their best shot – the top performers were promised contention for Ashes selection, and it was Bailey who made the most of the opportunity.

But after an ordinary show with the bat in the Ashes 2013-14, Bailey finds himself in a similar situation – battling for a spot in the side to tour South Africa, and the ODI series against England provides him the best opportunity to get some crucial runs, and remain in the reckoning.

Bailey is an attacking player by nature and has scored runs in the shorter formats of the game, which helped him to earn a place in the Australian Test side. He now faces a tough competition from Tasmanian teammate Alex Doolan, who was called in as a reserve for the fifth and final Test at Sydney. This should serve as a wake-up call for Bailey.

Doolan is more of a middle-order batsman and with the top-order in good form, the selectors are not likely to change the combination at the top of the order. This leaves them with the option of sneaking in Doolan into the lower-middle order, and Bailey’s ordinary show has given them an opportunity which they could take, as they intend to strengthen the Australian batting more for an important overseas tour.

The selection of the 31-year-old Bailey for the Ashes 2013-14 was certainly a welcome move by the Australian selectors. Bailey remained a critical member in the Australian win in the Ashes, and despite his ordinary show in the series, he must be given a longer rope to prove himself in Test cricket. His experience of leading the Tasmanian side in domestic circuit can help Michael Clarke on the field, and his ability to score quickly in the lower middle-order cannot be ignored, if the top-order is not firing on all cylinders.

Bailey is a captain himself and is experienced enough to understand what it will take to remain in the Australian side. He did acknowledge that scoring runs in Tests would be a lot tougher compared to ODIs when he was named in the Ashes squad, and even though he did not impress much with the bat in the eight innings he played, Bailey gave enough indications that he can succeed at the highest level.

One series is not enough for any player to be judged good or bad, and now that the Australian selectors have done away with the policy of making too many frequent changes, it becomes necessary for them to give a longer rope to Bailey as well. Moreover, the Australians won’t like to change the winning combination, which they have achieved after months of trials and failures.

(Devarchit Varma is a reporter with CricketCountry. He can be followed on Twitter @Devarchit)

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 20, 2014 (14:30 IST)   at Kolkata

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 22, 2014 (11:30 IST)   at Dubai

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 22, 2014 (19:00 IST)   at Cuttack

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Oct 25, 2014 (09:30 IST)   at Dhaka

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 27, 2014 (03:00 IST)   at Hamilton

More

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 24, 2014  at Mount Maunganui

South Africa won by 72 runs

South Africa tour of New Zealand, 2014

Oct 21, 2014  at Mount Maunganui

South Africa won by 6 wkts

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 17, 2014  at Dharamsala

India won by 59 runs

West Indies tour of India, 2014

Oct 14, 2014  at Visakhapatnam

Match cancelled

Pakistan vs Australia in UAE, 2014

Oct 12, 2014  at Abu Dhabi

Australia won by 1 run

Photos

Pakistan vs Australia, 1st Test at Dubai

Videos

Amla feels Proteas more acclimatised to conditions

Pakistan eye victory as Australia reel at 59/4 at stumps on Day 4

Suresh Raina gifts Aditya Garhwal an autographed bat

Dwayne Bravo says West Indies pull-out had everybody’s consent

Bangladesh gain upper-hand over Zimbabwe at stumps on Day 1 of 1st Test

David Warner and others with records related to hundreds in consecutive Test innings

Australia Australia tour of UAE 2014 Australia vs Pakistan Australia vs Pakistan 2014 Duleep Trophy India New Zealand New Zealand vs South Africa 2014 Pakistan Pakistan vs Australia Pakistan vs Australia 2014 South Africa South Africa tour of New Zealand 2014 South Africa vs New Zealand 2014 West Indies

Pakistan vs Australia 2014: Younis Khan considered skipping Tests

Michael Clarke: Younis Khan is one of the gentlemen of our game

Duleep Trophy 2014: Central Zone to meet South Zone in final

Pakistan eye victory as Australia reel at 59/4 at stumps on Day 4

Pakistan vs Australia 2014: David Warner admits that Australia is not scared of big targets

Younis Khan scores 26th ton to establish Pakistan record

Younis Khan becomes seventh Pakistani cricketer to score two hundreds in a Test

Virat Kohli and others with 20 ODI hundreds

David Warner and others with records related to hundreds in consecutive Test innings

Strangers, Brothers and Cricket— the English novelist CP Snow’s lasting passion for the game

Fan of the Day

Suraj Gowda

Suraj Gowda

642 Posts | 9 Fans

Virat Kohli's Family Meets Anushka Sharma

NGOs pursue education for all

ISL 2014, 12th Match: Delhi Dynamos FC 4-1 Chennaiyin FC in Pics

Apple to merge Beats Music with iTunes next year as music sales fall 14 percent in 2014: WSJ

Michael Clarke: Younis Khan is one of the gentlemen of our game

Anil Kapoor ropes in a new director for son Harshvardhan’s next?

WTA Finals 2014: Sania Mirza and Cara Black shock Kveta Peschke and Katarina Srebotnik to secure final berth

Pakistan vs Australia 2014: Younis Khan considered skipping Tests

International programme in Animal Husbandry

Bigg Boss 8 day 34 highlights: Salman Khan makes fun of Sonali Raut’s kamchor behaviour, RJ Pritam Singh entertains!

How to make tamarind or imli packs for hair and skin

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here