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Pick Shaun Marsh over Renshaw: Slats

AAP logoAAP 29/11/2016 Warren Barnsley

Michael Slater has urged Australian selectors not to turn their backs on injury-prone opening Test batsman Shaun Marsh.

Slater's fellow Nine Network commentator Ian Chappell on Tuesday didn't mince his words, urging selectors to "draw a line through" the West Australian's name due to his injurysusceptibility.

But Slater on Wednesday backed Marsh, who is recovering from a broken finger and averages 40 in his 19 Tests, to rejoin the side for the upcoming series against Pakistan at the expense of 20-year-old debutant Matt Renshaw.

The 33-year-old Marsh's international career hangs in the balance with a string of injuries keeping him out of regular selection contention, with his troublesome hamstrings the biggest issue.

His latest finger injury was sustained during the first Test against South Africa earlier this month in Perth, when he was one of Australia's more composed batsmen with 63 in the first innings.

"If Shaun Marsh had left the side with another hamstring problem - this on-going issue - I would probably think the injury's going to keep re-occurring," retired 74-Test opener Slater said on Sky Sports Radio.

"But because it's a broken finger, it's a little different."

Chappell prefers a focus on youth for the Australian side that faces a tough four-Test tour of India early next year.

"You can't have fellas injured all the time," Chappell told Adelaide radio station 5AA on Tuesday.

"I reckon he's the sort of fella who loses confidence fairly quickly.

"I would have moved on from Marsh, especially with these young guys doing some good stuff."

With selectors making five changes for the third Test victory at Adelaide Oval including debutant batsmen Renshaw, Nic Maddinson and Peter Handscomb, some commentators warned against further changes to the team.

Retired star batsman Mike Hussey urged selectors to "give these guys a good run at it" after giving them their first taste of Test cricket.

But Slater disagrees, saying Marsh was the better player and deserved a spot at the top of the order.

"I think that Matthew Renshaw now has had one Test, he's had a great experience," Slater said.

"He can go back and fill up with Shield runs, hopefully. We know that he's an international player in the future.

"So for the strength of the side, I think Shaun Marsh probably does come back in.

"I would think being the incumbent and showing some good form he should come back into the side."

The day-night first Test against Pakistan begins in Brisbane on December 15.

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