Marsh One-Day Cup 2019
Marsh One-Day Cup preview: South Australia
Coach Jamie Siddons takes a closer look at the Redbacks, who will lean on World Cup stars like Alex Carey and Kane Richardson during the Marsh One-Day Cup
16 September 2019, 11:25 AM AEST
South Australia will be chasing their first piece of silverware in eight years when this season's rebranded, revamped domestic one-day tournament – the Marsh One-Day Cup – gets underway this week.
Having been played as a single block of matches at the beginning of the season for the past six years, this summer tournament will span more than two months from September 21 to November 26 and be split by breaks for the Marsh Sheffield Shield. Teams could also lose players during the tournament due to Australia T20 series against Sri Lanka as well as their T20 and Test campaigns against Pakistan.
Australian World Cup squad members Alex Carey, Kane Richardson and Adam Zampa will be available for the start of SA campaign after long winters in the UK, and while skipper Travis Head has been rested for the start of the season following the Ashes, he expected to play a role later in the tournament.
The Redbacks spent a week on Queensland's Sunshine Coast last month but their under-strength side was well beaten by the hosts in two 50-over outings. Jake Weatherald was the only South Australia batsman to pass 50 while new recruit Wes Agar grabbed three wickets in the opening match, and fellow quick David Grant took three in the second. They will play practice matches against NSW and the CA Indigenous XI this week before their season opener against Queensland on September 24.
Cricket.com.au spoke to South Australia coach Jamie Siddons to preview the tournament.
The Redbacks have named the following 14-player squad for their opening two matches, minus regular skipper Travis Head, who has been rested following a long winter in the UK: Jake Lehmann (c), Wes Agar, Alex Carey, Tom Cooper, Callum Ferguson, Joe Mennie, Harry Nielsen, Lloyd Pope, Luke Robins, Alex Ross, Kane Richardson, Cameron Valente, Jake Weatherald, Adam Zampa
CA contracts: Alex Carey, Travis Head, Adam Zampa. SA contracts: Wes Agar, Tom Andrews, Tom Cooper, John Dalton, Callum Ferguson, David Grant, Jake Lehmann, Conor McInerney, Joe Mennie, Harry Nielsen, Patrick Page Jnr, Kane Richardson, Luke Robins, Alex Ross, Chadd Sayers, Cameron Valente, Jake Weatherald, Nick Winter, Daniel Worrall. Rookies: Jacob Dickman, Henry Hunt, Spencer Johnson, Tim Oakley, Lloyd Pope, Ben Pengelley
Possible Best XI: Alex Carey (wk), Jake Weatherald, Callum Ferguson, Travis Head (c), Tom Cooper, Jake Lehmann, Cameron Valente, Joe Mennie, Kane Richardson, Luke Robins, Adam Zampa
2018 result: Fifth
Sep 24: v Qld at AB Field (Fox Cricket & Kayo)
Sep 26: v NSW at AB Field (Fox Cricket & Kayo)
Sep 29: v Tas at Karen Rolton Oval (Cricket Network)
Oct 1: v Tas at Karen Rolton Oval (Cricket Network)
Oct 23: v Qld at the Gabba (Cricket Network)
Nov 17: v WA at Karen Rolton Oval (Cricket Network)
Nov 19: v Vic at the MCG (Fox Cricket & Kayo)
The inside word with Jamie Siddons
Those matches (in Queensland) probably didn't go as we'd hoped. But Queensland have been training outdoors since May, and we've had a week of it, so we didn't expect to dominate. And 90 per cent of our team wasn't there, so there's no major concerns. It was just a good chance for us to get out of our indoor centre and into some sunshine.
We're pretty close to a full squad. Chadd (Sayers) is battling with some back soreness. He'll be fine by the Shield season, but probably won't take part in the one-day comp. Dan Worrall's still coming back from his back injury, so he's a fair way off, which is a bit of a blow to us as one of our main strike bowlers. We'll need to pick five fast bowlers for our squad, and Luke Robins and Wes Agar are two guys we're looking at closely.
(Right-arm quick) Luke Robins played a game last year and was really good. He's one of the guys we're hoping will find his way into the team and step up. He's got quite a few changes of pace, he's a really good one-day bowler and he's got enough pace to bowl in four-day cricket as well. He's growing all the time, becoming more of a vocal person, but also leading by example as far as his training goes. He loves to bowl - we try to limit his numbers but he keeps wanting to bowl more, which isn't a bad trait for a fast bowler.
Player to watch
Jake Weatherald has tinkered a little bit with his set-up and hopefully he's ready to go. He's had a couple of really good one-day seasons in a row so we need him, as a four, five-year player now, to really step up. Everyone's seen him in the Big Bash and his strike-rate and average are quite good in the one-day comp, so if he does that again, (national selectors will) certainly have to start looking at him. But we just want some consistency out of him in one-day and four-day cricket, and just to see that growth out of him every year. He knows his game well now and knows how to go about it in each format, so I'm looking forward to seeing how he does it.
What your team biggest strength?
Without Frank (Worrall) we've probably lost that strike weapon with the new ball, but that's probably our only deficiency at the moment – I think we've got real good variety in our attack. We've got the left-arm option in Nick Winter if we choose to go that way, Robins ... has quite a few tricks, 'Richo' (Kane Richardson) who's so consistent and really good at the death, and Joe Mennie just knows where to put the ball through those middle overs to keep it tight, which allows (Adam) Zampa to attack more as a leg-spinner. Zampa did that really well last year, he took 12 wickets. So I think we've got every area pretty well covered with the ball.
Who the biggest threat?
You always get surprised. We haven't been able to beat Tassie the last few years, they're always a good side. New South Wales, it'll depend on how many internationals come back in, but they're very difficult to beat. Every side has had their moments in the comp over the last three or four years. They're all tough, and they're all probably looking at our team on paper and thinking we're going to be tough to beat as well.
What do you make of the new-look schedule?
It's a throwback to the good old days. I think it'll just take some planning. It'll be interesting to see how we manage our fast bowlers, and flying guys in and out to replace guys who have had a big Shield game, then having to front up two days later (in a one-day game). A lot of it will depend on if you've bowled on the last day of the Shield game or not. I think you'll also see some new players come through, and that's probably what it was designed to do in the first place. It'll take some management of players but it gives you the opportunity to change the team as well, which is a good thing.
What else can you tell us?
Richo is bowling beautifully. He's the mainstay of our attack, and he'll bowl at the start of the innings and at the back-end. He's looking great, and his attitude towards the Redbacks and training has been outstanding. He's really been leading from the front, which is good for us because he's one of our most influential players; if Kane's up and about, the whole team seems to lift.
Joe Mennie is a lot fresher than he was this time last year after an England stint, when he was our best one-day bowler.
The communication we've had (from the UK) suggests Zampa's in a great space, so we're really looking forward to having him back. He was probably the best spinner in the comp last year.
'Fergie' (Callum Ferguson) made two hundreds last year and he's a key player again in that bat-through role.
Tom Cooper set the world on fire in our (intra-squad) practice match so he's in great form. He took a couple of overs to get his eye in and then hit our death bowlers all over the park, so it was nice to see he's still got that ability to close it out for us.