Joe Burns and Matthew Wade will be fighting to extend their Australian Test careers in the second innings after the makeshift opening pairing failed to fire against India at the Adelaide Oval.
Both men were dismissed LBW by Jasprit Bumrah for eight and unsuccessfully reviewed the decisions in Australia’s first innings against the pink ball.
Burns has had an awful summer but selectors kept faith with the Queenslander after David Warner and Will Pucovski were ruled out.
And Wade was promoted from No 6 to take on the new ball, soaking up 51 deliveries before making way.
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“I suspect Joe will need to make a big second score to hang onto his spot in the side, if David Warner is available,” former Test opener and captain Mark Taylor told Wide World of Sports.
“There might only be one spot left for Wade and Burns.
“But I don’t know how far away Warner (groin) and Pucovski (concussion) are.
“It’ll depend on those two.
“Obviously if Warner’s available he plays but Pucovski maybe not, coming back from concussion could delay his debut.
“But if Warner’s available someone’s got to make way.
“Wade could go back down.”
Taylor thought both Burns and Wade looked “OK” and, after being bogged down, were just starting to find their feet before being dismissed.
He did, however, question Burns’ decision to take guard on off stump.
It is a method that has found favour among many Test batsmen, including Australian standouts Steve Smith and Marnus Labuschagne.
“Joe’s been getting further and further across in front of his stumps, trying to work out exactly where his off stump is and looking to leave as many balls as he can,” Taylor said.
“But the problem with that theory is exactly what happened.
“You get further and further across and get hit on the pads – he was trying to play that ball through square leg, probably thinking it was missing leg stump.
“To be fair to him he got a 50-50 one against him that could easily have been given not out and he’d still be there.
“So it happens when you’re out of form, those seem to go against you.
“But that’s the problem with batting further and further across in front of your stumps – you begin to think that balls that are hitting leg stump, are going way down the leg side.”
Another former Australian captain, Ian Chappell, agreed with Taylor’s assessment of the off stump guard.
In fact, Chappell was even stronger in his criticism.
“I don’t understand the theory of taking an off stump guard,” Chappell told Wide World of Sports.
“I think that gets you into more trouble than anything else.
“If the theory is based on it helps you understand where your off stump is, well I’m not sure about that because they finish up playing at balls outside off stump because of it, and even worse you lose track of your leg stump is.
“And both batsmen were out LBW so that probably tells you something.”