Devil’s Advocate: With Paine out, what if Philippe gets called into the Australia A squad?

Welcome to another devil’s advocate. In light of Tim Paine stepping away from all forms of cricket indefinitely, we’re going to have a look at another tough situation: what if Philippe gets an Australia A call-up?

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Well for starters, there’s a huge pecking order for the spot of Australian wicket-keeper and Paine’s leave of absence has a significant trickle-on effect. Here’s how it looks with Paine stepping away:

1. Alex Carey

2. Josh Inglis

3. Josh Philippe

4. Matthew Wade

5. Jimmy Peirson

Now there are a few players who have increased roles in SuperCoach because of this news, but no one benefits greater than Harry Nielsen ($76k WKP/BAT), assuming Carey is called into the Ashes squad for the entire series, ruling him out of the BBL and making Nielsen the Strikers’ default gloveman.

Nielsen’s job security is now unmatched for a cheapie as he will play for the whole season. He’ll also potentially bat at the top of the order so with that role and incredible job security, he’s moving towards being a must own now. We just need to know his batting position.

Now, back to the question, what if Philippe – who is currently fourth for most runs in the Sheffield Shield this season – gets an Australia A call-up? This would blow the wicketkeeper position wide open as Philippe is in 60% of teams right now, with the Sixers’ Round 1 double.

Take him out, and guys like Matthew Wade ($145k WKP/BAT), Ben McDermott ($163k WKP/BAT) and even Ben Duckett ($125k WKP/BAT) will rapidly increase in ownership. As for where to spend the leftover money that any of these options brings, well I’d just bank the cash if you’re going to Wade, otherwise I’d upgrade a cheapie.

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There are a couple of other cheaper options to replace Philippe, Nielsen of course is one, Duckett who we mentioned briefly before should be strongly considered with the Heat having a Round 1 double, which could mitigate the risk of the English batter syndrome. Duckett has represented England and averaged 51.77 SC BBL points in this year’s Vitality Blast, batting first drop for Notts. But you never know with English imports straight up.

Stars’ English keeper Joe Clarke ($112k WKP/BAT) should also be considered with a DGR around the corner in Round 3. He’s a very explosive batsman who, despite an underwhelming three-game stint with the Scorchers, has the ability to score large, but those same English concerns exist.

Finally, Jimmy Peirson ($89k WKP/BAT) could also be considered for your side with a double in Round 1 but he’s only value if he bats four or higher. Peirson has opened in the past for the Heat but not in recent seasons, so we’re cautious on that move.

Wade appears the best back-up option for Philippe as he’s definitely under-valued for what he’s capable of. An impressive 48% of his scores are above 60 SC BBL points per game, meaning he has a ceiling unmatched at his price. Pending fitness, he will open alongside D’Arcy Short and take the gloves.

So this is a short article but it’ll help you solve a problem that could very well become a reality. As always, tune in for these articles to help safeguard yourself against these awkward situations that may spring up out of nowhere.

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