Mark Waugh says Labuschagne is well equipped to handle India’s spinners

Former Australia captain Mark Waugh has heaped praises on Marnus Labuschagne, saying the player is currently the number one batsman in the world, while saying that the batsman can translate his Test success in the ODI series against India.

“He is probably the number one batsman in world cricket, albeit in the Test format, but I think he can carry that on into the white-ball format as well. I think he has got to bat in the top four,” quoted Waugh as saying.

“You would imagine Finch and Warner would open, Steve Smith at three and Labuschagne at four. I think he is ideally suited at four because he can play spin well, he is a good sweeper of the ball,” he added.

Waugh also recognized the fact that the batsman might find it difficult to play against the Indian spinners but is well equipped to handle whatever is thrown at him.

“He is going to get tested out, obviously, by the spin of India, by the likes of Kuldeep Yadav and Yuzvendra Chahal, Ravindra Jadeja, those sorts of guys. But a batsman in form going to India is exactly what you need. I think he will go really well,” Waugh said.

Labuschage grabbed several headlines recently when he racked up his career-best ranking and moved to the third place in the latest ICC Test player rankings. This came after he scored a match-winning double-century against New Zealand in Sydney.

The 25-year-old was the highest scorer in the series with 549 runs, while his five previous Tests saw him amass 896 runs.

Australia’s squad for three-match series against India: Aaron Finch (c), Ashton Agar, Alex Carey (VC), Pat Cummins (VC), Peter Handscomb, Josh Hazlewood, Marnus Labuschagne, Kane Richardson, D’Arcy Short, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Ashton Turner, David Warner, Adam Zampa.

The first ODI between India and Australia will be played on January 14 at the Wankhede Stadium.