Rogers,Lyon favour unchanged team

The hosts have played with the same team since the start of the series in November.

Written by Reuters | Melbourne | Published:January 1, 2014 11:08 pm

Opening batsman Chris Rogers wants an unchanged Australian team for the fifth and final Ashes test as a reward for the eleven players who beat England in the first four matches to emphatically wrest back the urn.

The hosts have played with the same team since the start of the series in November and they will head to Sydney eyeing a whitewash when the match starts on Friday. “We’ve had some good stability,” Rogers,who struck a sparkling century to fire Australia to a dominant eight-wicket win in the fourth Ashes test,told reporters on Tuesday.

“I just think it would be nice to have that same 11 standing on the podium at the end. The guys who have been here this whole series deserve to be there so it would be nice if we can keep that same team.”

Paceman Ryan Harris and all-rounder Shane Watson bowled sparingly in the second innings in Melbourne as they managed respective knee and groin complaints but are expected to be fit for Sydney.

Australia lost 3-0 in the year’s first Ashes series in England and few would have seen the reversal Down Under.

Off-spinner Nathan Lyon said the hosts’ ruthless performance did not come as a surprise to him and he also expected to be part of an unchanged Australia team. “We knew it was coming to be honest,” Lyon said,adding that Australia were thinking nothing other than winning the series 5-0. “Yes England beat us over there 3-0 but it was a lot closer over there.

“We had opportunities but we fell over at the line and here in Australia we’ve won the bigger moments and won them pretty well.

“It’s been a big reward for what we went through in England.”

Meanwhile Andy Flower has said he’ll be telling the new England Cricket Board managing director when they meet this week that he wants to continue contributing as a national coach despite the Ashes series debacle in Australia.

“Certainly I examine my role in the tour. I ask myself tough questions,’’ Flower told reporters in Melbourne on Monday,the morning after an eight-wicket defeat in the fourth test.

Flower,who has guided England to the top ranking at stages in the three formats since taking over a team in disarray in 2009,will meet ECB managing director Paul Downton in Sydney.

“We’ll talk about the leadership of the national team with regards to the coaching position,’’ Flower said. ”I’m very motivated to contribute to English cricket and that’s what I’m going to do.’’

Pattinson in ODI team

Injured fast bowler James Pattinson has returned to the Australia set-up when he was named on Tuesday for the one-day series against England in January.

The 23-year-old Pattinson has been recovering from a lower back injury that forced him home from Australia’s tour of England earlier this year.

Pattinson,who said he had been inspired by the exploits of Australia’s pace bowlers in recapturing the Ashes off England,had been working back to match fitness by playing Melbourne club cricket and domestic Twenty20 fixtures before possibly making the tour to South Africa.

“James Pattinson has worked hard to get back to full fitness and will be looking to regain his best form,” national selection panel head John Inverarity said in a statement. “His performances will provide a guide to the (panel) when it selects the team for the test tour to South Africa in February and March.k

Australia captain Michael Clarke returns to the side after missing the series in India with injury,while explosive opener David Warner has returned to the side after strong domestic form and throughout the Ashes. The first match of the five-game series is at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Jan. 12.

Australia ODI squad: Michael Clarke (captain),George Bailey,Nathan Coulter-Nile,Xavier Doherty,James Faulkner,Aaron Finch,Brad Haddin,Mitchell Johnson,Shaun Marsh,Glenn Maxwell,Clint McKay,James Pattinson,David Warner,Shane Watson.

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