India vs Australia: Adam Gilchrist says Will Pucovski might miss first Test despite ‘strong reason’ for inclusion

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Sydney: Australia great Adam Gilchrist believes that promising batsman Will Pucovski is set to miss out on making the side for the opening Test against India despite “strong reason” for his inclusion as the selectors seem reluctant to drop under-pressure Joe Burns.

Gilchrist said Australia are likely to keep faith the tried and tested combination of Burns and David Warner at the top of the order, despite Pucovski’s rising credentials through consecutive double-centuries in the Sheffield Shield.

“It’s only my opinion, but I detect that the selectors and the team really enjoy the partnership of Joe Burns and David Warner,” Gilchrist told foxsports.com.au.

“There is a fair bit of that strong reason in the case of Pucovski. (But) They’ll be reluctant to break that (partnership of Warner and Burns) up without really strong reason. They feel they complement each other and they have a yin and yang partnership.”

The legendary wicketkeeper-batsman said though Burns hasn’t been able to have personal tally of big scores, the team and selectors value his partnership with Warner.

Many former players, including ex-captain Mark Taylor, have called for Pucovski’s inclusion in the Test XI against India in the four-match series, starting in Adelaide with a day-nighter on 17 December.

But, both chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns and coach Justin Langer have indicated Burns is unlikely to be left out of the Test team.

Burns averaged 11.4 with only one score above 20 but he was Australia’s third highest run-scorer last summer (256 at 32.00).

More importantly, Tim Paine’s team won all five matches last summer to move to the top of the Test rankings.

Gilchrist said the final call between Burns and Pucovski could come down to what happens in the Australia A vs India game next month.

“… it could very much weigh on that Australia A game and what comes of that.

“Should he (Burns) miss out there and Pucovski nails another big one, the pressure may then be on to make the change,” said the 49-year-old, who played 96 Tests between 1999 and 2008, amassing 5570 runs at an avearge of 47.60.

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