Jake Fraser-McGurk will have to earn any more Australian selections through piles of runs

Jake Fraser-McGurk will have to earn any more Australian selections through piles of runs

Ricky Ponting may want boom batter Jake Fraser-McGurk “fast tracked” towards Test cricket but national selection chief George Bailey says the 21-year-old will have to earn his way through a mountain of Sheffield Shield runs like every other batting hopeful.

Bailey said the selection panel was “thrilled” with Fraser-McGurk’s mouth-watering effort against the West Indies in just his second ODI and conceded the young tyro had a “high, high degree of talent.”

The display in Canberra, when Fraser-McGurk slapped 41 runs off 18 balls, including 31 form a seven-ball boundary onslaught, moved Ponting to declare he could follow the path of David Warner and move from white-ball dynamo in to a Test player.

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Jake Fraser-McGurk smashed the West Indies bowler (Photo by Saeed KHAN / AFP)Source: AFP

Ponting said players with as much talent as Fraser-McGurk needed to be exposed to international cricket as much as possible to both learn their craft and make the most of their abundant abilities.

“I think he’s someone who can well and truly be fast-tracked through the Australian system, because of the natural talent he’s got, it reminds me a bit of a David Warner-sort of introduction into Australian cricket,“ he said this week.

On Friday, after announcing the Test squad for the upcoming tour of New Zealand, Bailey said the importance of going back to Shield level and piling on runs for South Australia would be impressive when he came to nurturing his obvious talent.

“His ability to learn about how to best utilise that (talent) across the formats will be really interesting over the next coming years,” Bailey said on Friday after announcing Australia’s squad for the Test tour of New Zealand.

“His opportunity to go back and get some really good, consistent performances in Shield cricket is really important.”

Fraser-McGurk only averages 22 at first-class level, but tellingly made his maiden red-ball century for SA this season among 278 runs in 10 Shield innings.

Jake Fraser-McGurk will need loads of Shield runs for the Redbacks. (Photo by Mark Brake/Getty Images)Source: Getty Images

Bailey also explained why Fraser-McGurk was not part of the T20 series against either the West Indies or the Kiwis despite his red-hot form. as selectors eye the World Cup to be held in the United States and the Caribbean in June.

“Thrilled with what he did when he came in and great to see him get an opportunity through those one-dayers,” Bailey said.

“There’s clearly a high, high degree of talent with Jake.

“We feel like we’ve got some pretty good options at the top of the order in that T20 side,

“Even then there’s a couple of other guys who have batted in the middle or have batted at the top in T20 cricket who can cover as well.

“The talent’s there (with Fraser-McGurk), he’s one we’re certainly keeping a close eye on.”


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