Victoria’s Todd Murphy chosen over veteran Jon Holland as WA bowls first in Shield final

Victoria's Handscomb aims to end Western Australia's domestic dominance

Todd Murphy, a Test off-spinner, defeated veteran tinker John Holland for a spot in Victoria’s XI, as the Vics will bat first in Perth.

Victoria's Handscomb aims to end Western Australia's domestic dominance

In their attempt to wrest the Marsh Sheffield Shield from Western Australia beginning today, Victoria chose emerging Test star Todd Murphy over experienced bowler Jon Holland.

After winning the coin toss this morning, Western Australia decided to bowl first. The toss was conducted by Shaun Marsh, a former batsman for Western Australia and Australia, who recently retired from international cricket.

The Victoria squad that defeated the Shield holders and league pacesetters at the WACA Stadium last week made two changes, with Murphy being one of them. Captain Peter Handscomb also made a comeback following his Test commitments.

Travis Dean, who was voted equal Shield player of the year with South Australia’s Henry Hunt last summer, is replaced by Handscomb after struggling this season.

Western Australia makes changes to their team as Victoria replaces struggling Dean with Chandrasinghe in Shield final

Dean has only averaged 16.85 in Shield levels and appeared to injure his left shoulder yesterday while trying an outfield catch at training. Ashley Chandrasinghe, a left-handed pitcher, has taken Dean’s place at the top of the lineup because he strangely hit the net, which resulted in the injury.

In the Shield final, WA chooses to bowl first as Todd Murphy gets the nod over other contenders

As expected, Western Australia has made several changes to its team. Three fast bowlers, including Test squad member Lance Morris, Matt Kelly, and left-armer Joel Paris, have been brought in to replace David Moody (who has a finger injury) and Charlie Stobo (who has a quadriceps injury). Meanwhile, seamer Cameron Gannon has been left out of the team.

Holland, 35, has been overlooked despite his plethora of experience at the WACA, where he bowled a grueling 40 overs in the second innings of last year’s final as WA fought out a draw to take the Shield on the first innings bonus point.

However, despite his lack of experience, 22-year-old Murphy gained recognition during the previous Qantas Tour of India in Shield matches in Perth. In four Test matches, he dismissed former captain Virat Kohli four times for 14 wickets at an average of 25.21.

Handscomb believes Murphy’s success in India and his lack of Shield experience in Perth are unrelated.

Handscomb noted yesterday that Todd Murphy was chosen despite having yet to participate in any games in India and doing well there.

Whether or not players have played here is of little concern to us.

Although believing it will be somewhat less bowler-friendly than the strip used in last week’s contest, where 33 wickets dropped in only three days of play with Victoria’s Scott Boland (8-98) dominating, both leaders anticipate the WACA surface to yield a result in the five-day final.

Sam Whiteman, the captain of Western Australia, remarked on game day, “It looks a little bit nicer than what it has throughout the whole season, at least to bat on.”

The goal is to make it more evenly contested between bat and ball, comparable to the Shield final from the previous year, and to support our bowlers in taking 20 wickets.

According to the modified final playing rules implemented for the 2018-19 season, WA won the 2018 final and claimed their first Shield victory since 1998-99 by accruing higher bonus points (1.67 to Victoria’s 1.44) throughout the first 100 overs of their respective teams’ first innings.

In addition to serving as a dose of reality for the squad that dominated the tournament for most of the summer, Whiteman said yesterday’s setback to Victoria had also been instructional for the defending champions.

When asked what lessons WA had learned from last week’s outcome, Whiteman responded Tuesday that winning the Shield in cricket is difficult.

“We made the most of the chance to rest a few players before that game since we knew we had it going into it.

“It is certainly not ideal for losing two games in a row, but we have looked at a larger body of information, and we have won four of five Shield games at home” (this season).

We start over since it is a new week and we are incredibly confident playing at home.

Handscomb acknowledged that Victoria was driven to stop the Shield from staying in the west for an additional year after WA won back-to-back Marsh One Day Cup championships and Perth Scorchers won back-to-back KFC BBL championships.

To end WA’s monopoly on competition medals, he stated, “Someone is got to, so we might as well try.”

They have been a fantastic team, and their roster has impressive depth, so that is a little added motivation.

“So whatever they are doing here is good, but taking one away from them would be lovely.”

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