Ashes 2017-18: Opportunity beckons for Ashton Agar in Sydney

The final Test begins from January 3.

Agar is likely to be selected for Sydney test. (AFP)

As Australia start off their preparations for the fifth and final Ashes Test in Sydney, for Ashton Agar it is yet another opportunity to cement his place in the Australian Test squad as the second spinner and a perfect foil to Nathan Lyon.

Agar has had a forgetful start to his Test career and has been an average career in whites so far. His last Test outing for Australia was against Bangladesh this year and said he was ready to take on England if he got his chance in Thursday's Sydney Test.

"I feel better coming into a Test match now. It doesn't feel too fresh or too out of the blue," Agar told reporters.

"Playing the one-dayers in India (this year) was a pretty whirlwind experience. So I certainly feel a lot better walking out onto the SCG now."

Going in with two spinners is very much a tactical move by Australian skipper Steve Smith with lead pacer Mitchell Starc sidelined with a heel injury. However, if he is fit for the Test match in Sydney it was likely either Agar or Starc would replace Jackson Bird in the final Australia XI.

Agar was very vocal about the opportunity presented to him for the Sydney Test. "I don't look back on that (Trent Bridge) too much. They are great memories but I've definitely moved forward since then and I feel like I've improved as a player," Agar said.

"I was a kid. I was 19 ... I'm certainly better for the experience.I've grown up a lot since then. Life experience and cricket experience. I'm still reasonably young, but the time is now so I'm just going to give it a good crack."

Steve Smith on the other and was unsure about the Sydney wicket after the Melbourne stalemate.

"We'll turn up there and see what the wicket is," Smith said after Saturday's Test draw.You don't know what you're going to get in Sydney. One day it could be green, one day it could spin a bit.
We've got all options there. We'll wait and see how we go” concluded the Aussie skipper.

By Anshuman Roy - 01 Jan, 2018

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