Chris Lynn will play domestic limited-overs matches for Queensland for the first time in five years as part of his bid to play a part in Australia’s 2019 ODI World Cup campaign following his recovery from a longstanding shoulder problem.
Not since 2013 has Lynn turned out for the Bulls in the 50-over tournament which is now played as a brief, pre-season affair due to the pre-eminence of the Twenty20 Big Bash League in the prime months of summer. Lynn’s previous selections for Australia in the 50-over format, playing one match in 2017 and then being picked in the ODI squad to face England at home earlier this year then ruled out through injury, have been based on his T20 showings alone.
However, the new Australian coach and selector Justin Langer made it clear that performances in state-based competitions will assume renewed importance, and Lynn will duly return to Queensland ranks, having signed a contract for the 2018-19 summer. This contract is also intended to cover the Sheffield Shield, but it is unlikely that Lynn will turn out in the first-class competition.
“It’s been a few years since I have been a part of the group for the limited-overs competition so I’m looking forward to getting involved and hopefully help us to play some good cricket,” Lynn said. “I’ve enjoyed training with the boys in the off-season and am keen to get into the playing side of things again, first with the (Trinbago) Knight Riders in the CPL and then the JLT Cup.”
Under Australia’s previous regime led by the former captain Steven Smith and the ex-coach Darren Lehmann, Lynn had appeared to be looming as a central part of plans to rejuvenate the ODI team’s top order with his power-hitting, after the fashion now favoured by England as the world’s No. 1 ranked 50-over side. It now appears that he will have to demonstrate his abilities for Queensland before being considered ahead of the limited-overs series against South Africa that will start the home summer.
Queensland have also had to deal with the loss of their first-choice wicketkeeper Jimmy Peirson due to a hamstring tendon injury that has required surgery, and will rule him out of the 50-over competition and the early part of the Shield schedule. The Bulls coach Wade Seccombe, himself a former gloveman, outlined the numerous options the state team have in Peirson’s absence.
“You accept that injuries are a part and parcel of the game but certainly the wicketkeeper fills a pretty specific role in the team and is not easy to replace,” Seccombe said. “Add into the mix Jimmy’s leadership and it does present us with a few challenges; but on the flipside, it also creates some opportunities to work on between now and the start of the season.
“We’re fortunate that Lachy Pfeffer has the benefit of coming into his second year as a contracted player so he will get plenty of opportunities to build-up his ‘keeping workload. We also have a core of emerging keepers in Tom Healy and Lewin Malady, who are both former Australian Under-19 players, and Isiah Snell who have been involved with national and state pathway programs in recent years and have performed well at Premier Cricket level.”
Another member of the Bulls squad, the 27-year-old allrounder Jason Floros, has chosen to make his exit from the game and pursue another career. Over the past decade, Floros has been a consistent presence in squads with sporadic appearances for Queensland, amounting to 15 first-class appearances and 28 limited-overs matches.
“Flo has always been a consummate team man and squad member and his decision to hand back a contract and create a spot in the squad speaks highly of his character,” Seccombe said. “We congratulate him on his career with the Bulls and thank him for his dedication and generosity, especially as a leader within the group.”