Flicking through the messy australianrules.com.au archive this week I came across this from February 2009…
TWO selection decisions this week might indicate a change of thinking in cricket circles.
First was the choice of young NSW opener Phillip Hughes for the Australian tour of South Africa ahead of Chris Rogers and Phil Jaques.
However of more significance, albeit at the lower level, is WA’s selection of 17-year-old Mitch Marsh for the one-day game against South Australian in Bunbury on Sunday 8 February.
The son of former Australian opening batsman Geoff and brother of current one-day opener Shaun, Mitch has a sporting decision to make.
Mitch Marsh played for WA in the AFL Under-18 National Championships as a key forward kicking four goals against Tasmania in his best performance.
The selection of such a young player in a senior WA team is very rare, in fact Marsh will be the youngest for over 70 years.
While Marsh comes into the team with some nice form behind him – a club record 208 for Fremantle last week – his selection is clearly an effort by cricket to get the jump on the AFL.
Speaking on radio station 6PR WA coach Tom Moody said footy was cricket’s main competition in WA, “Most talented kids are multi-talented,” he said. However he pointed out that Marsh was probably not in the top echelon in footy while his cricket prospects were exciting. “Mitch would be crazy to do anything but cricket,” Moody said.