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Travis Head not to sweat over his place in next year's 50-over World Cup squad

Melbourne, Nov 23 (IANS) Charismatic Australia batter Travis Head has said he will stay “relaxed” and “calm” and wait for his opportunities in the lead-up to the ODI World Cup in India next year, indicating he will not sweat over whether he will be in the squad for the showpiece event one year from now.

Head cracked a fine 152 and shared an opening partnership of 269 runs with David Warner as the duo set several records on way to thrashing England by 221 runs (D/L method) and make a clean sweep of the three-match series at Melbourne on Tuesday.

Head had found himself being dropped from Australia’s 2019 50-over World Cup campaign despite sterling performances, including 128 in a dominant double-century opening stand with Warner in Adelaide in January 2017, followed by eight half-tons in 24 matches. But some low scores during a home series late in 2018 saw the left-hander being dropped for the mega-event in England.

“Four years on, history seems to be repeating for Head, but this time he’s got the understanding of living through a missed World Cup, and the expectations as the next one approaches in India next year,” reports cricket.com.au.

“I have been in that position and watched from the 12 months leading into a World Cup, and missing that was tough because I felt like I was going well and things just didn’t fall my way. I’ve (gone) away and played three good years of domestic cricket to get my chance again. It’s started well but you can’t hang your hat on it, (I’ve) got to stay relaxed and calm and back my ability,” said Head after playing a historic innings at MCG on Tuesday, which helped the hosts amass 355/5 in 48 overs and then dismiss England for 142 runs.

“I’ve played enough cricket now to know what the expectations are for Australia; I still hold a lot of pride in what I’m doing but I’m a lot more relaxed about things,” added Head, who was the ‘Player of the Series’ during the Ashes earlier this year.

Head added he is happy to bat anywhere for Australia, but his record shows that opening is his best position in the 50-over format, and he’s building a formidable combination with Warner. “In 18 ODI innings as opener, Head has 923 runs at 51.27, nine runs better than his next best batting position,” according to the report.

“We (Warner and I) see the game in a similar way,” said Head. “I think we’ve seen that in the way that we’ve gone out and played in the past and in this series. It’s been a nice partnership, I enjoy batting with him and vice versa, hopefully. He’s obviously (an) unbelievable (player), which helps to have the confidence at the other end. I’ll take any position that puts me in the Australian cricket team.

“In white-ball cricket I’d like to bat as high as I possibly can. I know the various opportunities I have got at the top I’ve had some success. I guess the challenge now…is being able to do it consistently for a period of time,” added Head.

–IANS

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