Finch, who made his Test debut against Pakistan in the UAE earlier this year, partner Khawaja up the order and averaged 45 over four innings.
Finch, who made his Test debut against Pakistan in the UAE earlier this year, partner Khawaja up the order and averaged 45 over four innings.

With Australia picking uncapped Marcus Harris, an opener by trade, and a fit-again Usman Khawaja back in the 14-member squad, the call for Aaron Finch to move down the order picked up steam. However, former record-setting Australia captain Ricky Ponting believes that Finch should open the batting alongside Harris.

Finch, who made his Test debut against Pakistan in the UAE earlier this year, partner Khawaja up the order and averaged 45 over four innings. But, Finch has batted in the middle-order for Victoria and is likely to bat one down in the upcoming Sheffield Shield game, indicating that the 32-year-old may be bumped down the order come the first Test against India at the Adelaide Oval starting December 6.

“Finch is a bit of an anomaly really that the last few years he’s done most of his batting for Victoria in the middle order. Then because they go to the UAE where conditions probably weren’t going to be that new-ball friendly they gave him the chance to open. So he deserves to stay in the team and open,” Ponting told cricket.com.au.

“He’s had a lot of success around the world opening the batting in T20s and one day internationals – if he can go in with a similar mindset and not worry too much about opening the batting in a Test match in Australia against the red ball, I’m sure he’ll have some success,” said Ponting.

Ponting also revealed his Playing XI for the first Test slotting Khawaja at three with Marsh brothers – Shaun and Mitch  - despite their forgettable UAE tour making it to Ponting’s XI at No.4 and No,6, with Travis Head getting the nod at No.5.

Surprisingly, Ponting has left out Peter Handscomb from his XI. The lower-order is settled with skipper Tim Paine at No.7 followed by Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Nathan Lyon and Josh Hazlewood.