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Sunday, March 3, 2024

The Test hopefuls creating headaches ahead of New Zealand tour

He is keen to play a red-ball match following his inauspicious international debut in last Friday’s opening one-day match against the West Indies in Melbourne. Morris claimed 0-59 from his 10 overs, bowling too short in a match Australia won by eight wickets. Fellow debutant Xavier Bartlett claimed 4-17 from nine overs with his lively outswingers. Both were rested for the second match in Sydney but are expected to return for Tuesday’s third and final match.

“The one word that comes to mind is just a bit of relief,” Morris said of his debut for Australia. “I’ve been fortunate enough to be around the squad for probably 12 to 18 months now, and it’s been an amazing experience.

Lance Morris made his international debut for Australia last Friday.

Lance Morris made his international debut for Australia last Friday.Credit: Getty Images

“But, obviously, watching the guys go about their business gets you pretty excited to walk out there yourself and have a crack at it. So, to finally get the nod was awesome.

“I was a little bit disappointed with how I went. Obviously, in an ideal world, you probably imagine yourself playing like Xavier Bartlett. He had an amazing game. It was a privilege to watch him go about his business.

“On a personal note, I wasn’t at my best the other day, but I don’t think you can expect the world of yourself in your first game.

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“I’m super excited to be around the Aussie group. I’ll be keen to get back to the West Australian set-up after this tournament, but I think I’m in the right place at the moment. It’s exciting times.”

In some heartening news for the selectors, Australia’s fourth pace bowler, Scott Boland, appears to have shaken off a knee problem that prevented him from bowling on Sunday for Victoria in the Sheffield Shield match against South Australia.

Should Boland not be able to make the New Zealand tour, Michael Neser is an obvious replacement option.

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