Australia call up Kuhnemann for India s extreme spin challenge
February 12, 2023 08:01 PM
Australia called up left-arm spinner Matthew Kuhnemann to bolster the squad ahead of its second match against India, with coach Andrew McDonald saying Sunday he had a "live chance" of making his Test debut in Delhi.
The tourists suffered an innings and 132-run hammering inside three days of the opener in Nagpur on Saturday to trail the four-match series 1-0.
Kuhnemann, a 26-year-old bowler who played four one-day internationals last year, would strengthen Australia's spin resources, with his Queensland teammate Mitchell Swepson due to return home for the birth of his first child.
"He's a live chance to play in the next Test match," McDonald told reporters on what would have been the fourth day of the opener.
"If we play three spinners then we clearly want back-up here and available in the squad if that's the way we want to go. That's why we've got four spinners in the squad."
World number one Australia were outplayed by India in Nagpur, and McDonald said it would be a challenge to tackle "extreme spin" in all four matches.
"The first Test match of any series sets the scene to potentially the surfaces you are going to encounter," said McDonald.
"It will be a different challenge (in Delhi), but we feel as though it will be extreme spin... throughout the series."
The visitors fell for 177 in the first innings and 91 in the second on a turning Nagpur pitch, where the hosts made 400.
Skipper Rohit Sharma made 120, but Indian off-spinner Ravichandran Ashwin and left-arm orthodox Ravindra Jadeja combined to flatten the Australian batting twice with 15 wickets between them.
Kuhnemann said he was excited to fly to India after he got the news during a Sheffield Shield game in Melbourne.
"Got a phone call yesterday morning when walking out for the warm-ups. Was pretty shocked," Kuhnemann said after Queensland's defeat to Victoria.
"I was just lucky enough that my passport was in my bag.
"I watched every day (of the first Test) just being such a fan. These series are so good to watch. Todd Murphy was exceptional and sort of watched how Jadeja bowled. So just really excited to get over there."
Debutant Murphy was the lone bright spot for Australia in Nagpur, with figures of 7-124 as he got out the Indian greats including Virat Kohli with his off spin.
The visiting team will be looking to make changes for a bounce back, with all-rounder Cameron Green and pace bowler Mitchell Starc in line to make the team in the match starting Friday.