NSW Blues seamer Trent Copeland believes fast bowling teammate Sean Abbott is ready to take the next step to Test level ahead of the next round of the Marsh Sheffield Shield starting on Sunday.
Copeland, who starred in the Blues’ win over Queensland last week with 5-17 from 18 overs, and Abbott, join Australian Test bowlers Mitchell Starc and Nathan Lyon in the Blues 12-man squad to take on Tasmania at Gladys Elphick Park this week in Adelaide.
It is the final round of a block of four Shield rounds in Adelaide. The Blues registered their first victory of the campaign in a nail-biting one-wicket win against Queensland.
Abbott has demonstrated his true potential as an allrounder in the Blues’ opening two matches claiming 10 wickets and averaging 144 with the bat.
“I’ve got no doubt he’s ready to be in that Test hub this year if that was to come his way,” said Copeland.
“It’s been really impressive to watch (Sean) go about his business, with bat and ball, and the hard work that he’s put into his batting is paying off.
“It’s a real value add to be a guy that can play in the Test team and can bat seven or eight when we want to go with a certain balance.”
Speaking about his superb spell in the second innings against Queensland, when at one stage he had 5-7 from 15 overs, Copeland said it was a rare day to go as perfectly as it did.
“That was a rare day where everything went right. The whole day it was every spell that I bowled.
“The context of the game, the fact that the wicket had got pretty flat and wasn’t doing a lot for the seamers, it was a really special part of that game to help us go on and win.”
Kurtis Patterson enters the fixture against Tasmania needing just 44 runs to reach 4,000 Sheffield Shield runs.
Play starts at 11.00am (AEDT) tomorrow in Adelaide with the match live streamed on www.cricket.com.au and Kayo Sports.
NSW Blues 12-man squad v. Tasmania at Gladys Elphick Park, Adelaide
Peter NEVILL (Captain)
MARSH SHEFFIELD SHIELD Round 4
November 8 – 11, 10:30am (11.00am AEDT): South Australia v Queensland, ACH Group Stadium
November 8 – 11, 10:30am (11.00am AEDT): Tasmania v New South Wales, Gladys Elphick Park
November 8 – 11, 11:00am (11.30am AEDT): Victoria v Western Australia, Karen Rolton Oval
The first four rounds of the Marsh Sheffield Shield will be live streamed on www.cricket.com.au and, for the first time, on Kayo.