Sport Cricket 40-somethings still a chance for World T20
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40-somethings still a chance for World T20

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Australian T20 captain Aaron Finch says no age limit will be placed on selection for this year’s World T20 in India, opening the door for 40-somethings Brad Hogg and Brad Hodge to revive their international careers.

Hodge, 41, and 44-year-old Hogg still rate among Australia’s best T20 players despite being in the twilight of their careers.

Hogg played a crucial role in the Perth Scorchers’ past two titles, and he again looms as a trump card heading into this summer’s BBL finals.

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Hodge has averaged 55 for the table-topping Adelaide Strikers this summer, proving he has lost none of the class that made him one of the best players in Australian domestic ranks.

Hogg featured in Australia’s previous two World T20 campaigns, while Hodge was selected for the last edition in 2014.

Although they face a fight to earn selection again, Finch gave them more than a glimmer of hope.

“If we think they can help win a game for Australia, I don’t think there’s any reason not to consider them,” Finch said on Sunday.

“I’m not saying that any of them will be selected. But at the same time, you have to look at everyone.

“We are trying to win a World (T20) tournament for the first time, and we would be silly not to have a look at the make-up and see if you can fit whoever it is.

“Whether it’s an 18-year-old kid or a 45-year-old Brad Hogg – I think you have to look at that option. But it doesn’t necessarily mean it will happen.”

Selectors will get a good chance to assess their options during the upcoming series against India, which will feature five one-dayers and three T20s.

Young pace trio Joel Paris, Scott Boland, and Kane Richardson will get the chance to push their case for longer-term selection during the series.

And in-form batsman Shaun Marsh is in line to play his first ODI since January last year when the ODI series starts at the WACA Ground on Tuesday.

Australia’s squad has experienced a big overhaul since winning the World Cup last year.

Michael Clarke, Mitchell Johnson, and Brad Haddin have all retired, while Shane Watson has fallen out of favour.

Finch said despite the big cleanout of players, the squad could still hang their hat on last year’s success.

“We had an extraordinary World Cup,” Finch said.

“We had a great couple of years leading into that, there is no reason why there shouldn’t be a big build-up and a big amount of excitement around our team.”

Opener David Warner is set to play in the series opener in Perth, but his availability from that point on remains up in the air because of the imminent arrival of his second child.

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