OPINION: The Australian Test season is back and so far it looks like it's going to be a long summer for the boys slinging the leather.
The South Africans seemed very much at ease facing the Australian pace attack on Day 1 with Kallis and Amla both scoring centuries.
A noticeable absence in the Australian line up was that of a left arm quick. Australia mixed in the spin of Lyon and the part timers Hussey and Quiney for some variety, but you can be assured that Quiney won't get the ball again in Adelaide.
The only left handed bowler they could have passed the ball to in the first test was Michael Clarke with his slow left arm orthodox, but as Captain he's not going to bowl himself all that often (one over in fact).
Why then was Mitchell Starc carrying the drinks?
The option of having a left arm fast bowler in the attack instead of three right handers should be at the forefront of the selectors' minds for the Adelaide test starting on the 22nd.
A left handed bowler can not only give the Aussies another angle of attack but it can go a long way to unsettling the South African batting line up.
So what are Australia's best left handed options?
Besides Mitchell Starc the only other left arm fast bowler with a Cricket Australia contract is the Mitchell Johnson who is returning from injury. On the fringe and without contracts are the up-and-coming all-rounders Aaron Finch and James Faulkner.
Faulkner would be the obvious choice to step up (if Starc and Johnson were not available) as he would provide a solid number 7 or 8 in the batting line up plus a first or second string left arm bowler in the attack.
Could Faulkner be sitting in the shadows as a replacement for the ageing Michael Hussey or even Ricky Ponting?
The option of having both Faulkner and Starc or Johnson in the line up would certainly provide the Aussie attack with plenty of bowling variety and would go a long way to unsettling a few opposing line ups.
A look at the South African team provides another example of this. Again, no left arm bowlers in the starting XI or even in the touring party.
Australia have a great opportunity to play a left arm pace bowler or all-rounder when their opposition doesn't even have a left arm bowler to practice against on the tour.
Looking on to the 2nd test at the Adelaide oval, the selectors will no doubt be looking at making a change to the current attack.
Lyon should certainly retain his spot on an Adelaide wicket the normally provides for the spinners.
Pattinson should be safe with the courage and fire he provided on the final day in Brisbane.
That means that either Siddle or Hilfy will carry the drinks. A choice that the selectors will not make lightly.
On any given opportunity there should be at least one left arm bowler (not spin) in the attack.
Not only does it give the bowler in question a great attacking chance but it gives his team mates bowling around him a chance to attack a batsman that is always changing their train of thought.
The left-right combination in any sport is always favoured so why are Australia not doing it now?
Does Australia need a left arm pace bowler or all-rounder?
This poll ended on 15 December 2012.
This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.
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