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Australia vs New Zealand, 1st Test: Justin Langer Hints at Unchanged XI for Australia

Australia vs New Zealand, 1st Test: Justin Langer Hints at Unchanged XI for Australia

David Warner and Steve Smith

Australian cricket team’s coach Justin Langer hinted that his team might go unchanged into the first test against New Zealand starting from Thursday in Perth.

Australia are coming on the back of two crushing wins over Pakistan, and Langer felt very little need to change the winning combination.

“I’d be a brave man to change the XI,” Langer was quoted as saying by Cricket.com.au. “The boys are playing well. We’ve still got a couple of training sessions, we haven’t had a look at the wicket yet but I’d say at this stage, more than likely we’ll have the same XI.”

For Langer- someone whose playing career was spent with a team that hardly changed things- it only seems natural to not make changes to the winning combination.

“I’ve said for 18 months, there used to be a philosophy in Australian cricket, which worked so well for us – it’s harder to get out of the Australian cricket team than it is to get in it,” he said.

“That usually happens when guys are playing well and the team is playing well. We’ve won the last couple of Test matches. There’s definite benefit and advantage in keeping the core group of players together and hopefully this will be another opportunity this week to do that.”

James Pattinson
James Pattinson will miss the first test against New Zealand if Australia go in with same line up

Australia New Zealand will be playing a three-match test series which will be a part of the ICC World Test Championship. Although Australia have an upper hand in the head to head record, Langer said he respected the opponents and praised New Zealand’s bowling attack.

“They’re a very, very good cricket team,” Langer said.

“Talk about continuity, they’ve certainly got that; they’ve got a seasoned bowling attack, they’ve got the aggressor in (paceman Neil) Wagner, potentially (express fast bowler Lockie) Ferguson, they’ve got guys in the top 10 in Test cricket, they’ve got one of the great players in their captain (Kane Williamson), who not only plays with great skill but great humility.

“We have huge respect for the New Zealand cricket team and for New Zealand in general. It’s going to be a great contest, we can’t wait.”

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