England v Australia - 4th Specsavers Ashes Test: Day Four
England v Australia - 4th Specsavers Ashes Test: Day Four

Harris’ vow to not ‘spiral out of control’

Marcus Harris has refused to "spiral out of control" in searching for the key to more runs despite living his life in the Test selection bubble.

The 27-year-old opener doesn't have to be reminded he hasn't yet done enough in his nine Tests to cement his position in the Australian top-order.

But as he prepares for another showdown with his competitors for the opening spot alongside David Warner, Harris isn't wasting too much time looking around corners for the answer to nail down his spot.

 

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Marcus Harris had some well documented struggles during the Ashes series. Picture: Getty
Marcus Harris had some well documented struggles during the Ashes series. Picture: Getty

He said selection uncertainty, for any team, was "part and parcel of being a professional cricketer".

And Harris, who has nearly 6000 first class runs in the bank, knows lots more of them are the only way to avoid the revolving door.

"This time last year I just went about playing Shield cricket and if I got picked in the Aussie side I got picked. I'm still pretty much the same now," Harris said before flying to Perth for the Australia A clash with Pakistan, a match that will determine who plays in the first Test at the Gabba.

"I've played nine Test matches but I feel like I have played a lot of cricket, I've played nearly 90 first class games, so I've got experience under my belt.

"It would be nice to be cemented in the side …. but I've left myself in this situation. I don't lose any sleep over it. I just know what I need to do and that sits well with me."

 

Runs have flowed in the Sheffield Shield for Harris this summer. Picture: AAP
Runs have flowed in the Sheffield Shield for Harris this summer. Picture: AAP

A century to start the Shield season was perfect for Harris who put himself under selection pressure by failing to pass 19 in six innings during the Ashes.

But the left-hander, who scored 1188 Shield runs last summer while also playing six Tests, came home adamant he wasn't out of form.

His confidence in his ability also meant that, despite a slight stance adjustment, he didn't need to do a technique deep-dive in order to reassert his position in the pecking order.

"It can get to that point where you go above and beyond and it can spiral out of control. I just try to stay level as much as I can," he said.

 

Marcus Harris had confidence in his technique and was adamant he wasn’t out of form after a lacklustre Ashes. Picture: AAP
Marcus Harris had confidence in his technique and was adamant he wasn’t out of form after a lacklustre Ashes. Picture: AAP

"I never felt like I got out of form in England because I wasn't out there enough to get out of form. I came back confident, I knew my game was good, and if I applied myself long enough I'd be fine.

"That's the approach I have taken in to the summer.

"This is the pressure you have to play under, and it's nothing like the pressure of a Test match. You just deal with it. There can be nerves, but once you get out there, you forget all that.

"You just know whoever makes runs will be in pole position to get picked."

Meanwhile, Victoria could unveil yet another batting prodigy next week with 17-year-old Jake Fraser-McGurk included in a 12-man squad for the Sheffield Shield clash with Queensland.

Will Sutherland, the son of former Cricket Australia boss James, could also make his debut in the game with several Victorian stars in Perth playing for Australia A.

Batting prodigy Jake Fraser-McGurk could make his first-class debut for Victoria this week. Picture: AAP
Batting prodigy Jake Fraser-McGurk could make his first-class debut for Victoria this week. Picture: AAP

Fraser-McGurk, a member of the Australian Under 19 squad, blasted 130 for the Victorian second XI in September which earnedhim a call-up to the Cricket Australia XI which played Pakistan in Sydney.

Still only on a rookie contract with Victoria, the teenager was on the verge of a Big Bash debut last summer, and has retained his contract with the Melbourne Renegades.

This week McGurk helped rescue a rain-affected draw for the Vics second XI, with a second innings of 78 which helped secure his promotion to the squad for next week's game at the MCG.

Aaron Finch, Marcus Harris, Will Pucovski and Nic Maddinson were all unavailable, while fast bowler James Pattinson was rested.

Travis Dean, who captained the Vics to the Shield title last summer, was dropped after just one game back in the team.

Victorian squad:

Peter Handscomb (C)

Scott Boland

Aaron Finch

Jake Fraser-McGurk

Sam Harper

Jon Holland

James Pattinson

Matt Short

Peter Siddle

Will Sutherland

Chris Tremain

Eamonn Vines

News Corp Australia


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