Brett Lee not selected for first Test

There’s a lot of confusion today – or there will be when Australia wakes up in a few hours – about the decision to drop Lee against New Zealand. Jeff Thompson has voiced his opinion in classic style:

“Lee’s bowled well in one-day games against a team of no-hopers. One-day cricket is a joke. Kasper has done the hard yards, done nothing wrong. An idiot can get wickets in one-day cricket.”

That’s his opinion of course – I tend to agree with him. An ODI bowler can’t necessarily progress to a Test bowler (a successful one)…a Test bowler can, or should be capable of playing good ODI cricket. I think that’s where Thommo’s coming from.

The next bit is from Ponting – this must have been yesterday:

“At the moment Brett has a bit of a psychological edge over some of the NZ batsmen. So there’s all those things you have to consider. I know if I was in their side and looked at a teamsheet and saw his name wasn’t on it I would be reasonably relieved at this stage of the tour.

Australia has, for some time now – in my eyes – always had a good, consistent selection policy; one in which the media, players and captain have (generally) all been in agreement with. So this is really odd that Lee should be “dropped”, or rather not be selected, especially after Ponting’s comments. I don’t like Lee, I don’t think he’s a particularly good red-ball bowler, but surely a horses-for-courses selection this time round would have really finished New Zealand off sharpish?

Thommo’s article here, and Alex Brown’s here

UPDATE: (forgot to post team)

AUSTRALIA Ricky Ponting (capt), Justin Langer, Matthew Hayden, Damien Martyn, Michael Clarke, Simon Katich, Adam Gilchrist, Shane Warne, Jason Gillespie, Glenn McGrath, Michael Kasprowicz

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