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Spurned Sayers seeks selection answers

Cricket

Disappointed South Australian bowling ace Chadd Sayers has asked for clarity from selectors after he was left out of Australia’s squad for March’s four-Test tour of South Africa.

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Sayers formed a part of Australia’s squad as a reserve for the opening Tests of the Ashes, and has led the Sheffield Shield for wickets over the past season and a half with 79 scalps.

However, his name was missing from the 15-man squad named for the South African series on Monday, with 21-year-old Jhye Richardson instead selected alongside Jackson Bird as a back-up quick.

“I’m just disappointed and just want some clarity,” Sayers told Adelaide radio station FIVEaa just hours after the selection news.

“I’d like to know where I stand in Cricket Australia’s eyes and where I can get in their side. It’s quite hard to take at the moment.”

Sayers said he was also frustrated by the fact he hadn’t received a call from Australian selectors to notify him of the decision.

However, he said he’d since called chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns to seek answers himself, and was waiting for a return phone call at the time of the interview.

“I guess that’s one of the disappointing things, that I haven’t had a phone call to actually find out why I was left out,” he said.

“It would be nice to know … Get some clarity on how Jhye Richardson, who has only played five Shield games, was picked ahead of me.

“To not be touring with that squad and for a young kid to come in, I’m back in the pecking order now.”

Sayers accepted that he would have only played if one of Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins or Jackson Bird had gone down injured, but believed he would have been effective on South Africa’s pace-friendly wickets.

“I thought South Africa would have been perfect for my bowling with the conditions over there,” he said.

“You watch Vernon Philander go about his business as he does, he takes a lot of wickets in South African conditions.”

Meanwhile, Hohns admitted Sayers had been unlucky at the naming of the squad, but put him in the same category as Jackson Bird while Richardson provided a back-up out-and-out quick option.

“Chadd is performing well as he always does but with Jackson Bird there he has the jump on Chadd at the moment,” Hohns said.

“We have him, Josh Hazlewood is a well-renowned seam bowler then we have the good pace of Starc, Cummins and Jhye Richardson.”

AAP

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