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Sheffield Shield 2020-21 – Six players to watch as the Sheffield Shield returns




Australia are not scheduled to play another Test match for 10 months but there are opportunities to impress in Shield with the Ashes on the horizon

The Sheffield Shield resumes on Wednesday with the Australia Test squad available to play the remainder of the season, barring any injury issues, after the Test tour to South Africa was postponed. Cameron Green and Will Pucovski played their way into the Test team during the first half of the Shield season in Adelaide. Here are six players to watch during the second half of the season as Australia look towards the Ashes next summer.

Usman Khawaja

The 34-year-old is the forgotten man of Australian cricket. Despite his impressive record in all formats he somehow couldn’t find a place among the 37 Australian players selected for the two touring parties to South Africa and New Zealand in the Test and T20 formats, but it was revealed he was on standby for the South Africa tour. Australia have holes to fill in the Test top six and Shield runs could yet put him back in contention. He has a Shield century already this season against South Australia. Queensland sit top of the table with five games to go and the captain may have 10 chances plus a final to add to his tally and put himself back in the Ashes frame.

Moises Henriques

Henriques is playing the best cricket of his career and with Matthew Wade’s axing, he was firmly in the mix to fill the vacant No. 5 role in South Africa, along with Travis Head. Henriques hasn’t played Test cricket since 2016 and has never played a Test at home. His overall first-class record does not reflect how well he has played in the last four years. Since his last Test match appearance, he has averaged 42.57 and made eight centuries but in the last two Shield seasons he has averaged 51.70 and made four centuries in 20 innings, including two at the start of this Shield season in the Adelaide hub. He has just turned 34, but with Green and Pucovski already in the Test squad, there is less of an urge to promote youth at the expense of the best options. More centuries in the second half of the Shield season could put him firmly in the Ashes frame.

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