Marcus Harris shelves county plans to stay fresh for Ashes challenge
Marcus Harris averaged 26.85 in four Tests against India. © AFP

The rookie Australia Test opener Marcus Harris has cancelled his plans to pursue a county stint this summer ahead of the Ashes in England, as he instead chooses to rest after a tough induction to international cricket over the past two months.

After six Tests, Harris averages 32.70 with two fifties and while his most recent Test opening partner Joe Burns and hopefuls Matt Renshaw and Cameron Bancroft will play for various counties, the Victorian has opted to refresh himself with hopes of succeeding against England.

“I was looking at it for a little while,” Harris told on Thursday. “But once I got to the point where I was actually pretty worn out after the Tests, I thought the best thing for me was the have a break.

“I definitely thought about it, but then I thought if I don’t have a break, I’ll be pretty much non-stop for the whole time. (My manager) was in discussions, but nothing too serious. I shut it down after a little bit because I didn’t want to lead anyone astray.”

With David Warner s ban ending on March 29, Harris is aware that one opener s slot may be vacated to accommodate the former vice-captain. Should Warner return to Australia s team for the Ashes, one of Burns and Harris will have to make way. (READ MORE: Burns braces for Ashes challenge, irrespective of Warner’s return)

With the Sheffield Shield to resume after the Big Bash League ends on Sunday, and Australia A set to tour England in June and July before the Ashes, Harris is confident of remaining in good form.

“I know if I make some runs, that stuff will look after itself,” he said. “There’s plenty of water to go under the bridge. I missed an opportunity in the Sri Lanka series, but that’s cricket. Sometimes that’s the way things go. I put myself in a position to make some big runs on a few occasions. I had a few really good partnerships and while it was disappointing not to get a big score, hopefully I’ll learn from that and it’ll hold me in good stead.

“If someone said to me at the start of the summer that I’d play six Tests and win a series, I would have told them to get stuffed. It was great to be a part of it and great to be around that group and learn so much.”