Former fast bowler Geoff Lawson has lambasted Cricket Australia's (CA) new-age rotation policy for pace men, saying absence of tenacious Peter Siddle in the squad for the Perth Test against South Africa doesn't make any sense.
"The Australian cricket selectors have decided that no longer will they take their first-choice combination into a grand final. Granted, Peter Siddle got through a few overs in Adelaide, hampered by the absence of James Pattinson due to his mystery side strain," Lawson wrote in column for the Sydney Morning Herald.
"Siddle's match total of 63 overs is neither a massive number nor a light spell for a Test bowler; the weather in Adelaide was warm rather than hot," he further wrote.
Lawson added: "Siddle has decided a vegetarian diet is better for him than high-protein meats ... has he consulted the Cricket Australia dietician? Has he been directed by the CA medical staff to remain on that diet?"
"The sports science staff appear to do everything else, including telling selectors whom to pick," he wrote.
"Coach Mickey Arthur has been explicit in the instructions he is getting from the sports science people (no names are ever attached, talk about faceless men and women) who are instructing him on who should be playing for Australia," he added.
"Siddle reckoned he would be OK for the game after three days of rest. He was probably right, for he knows his body and capabilities better than any blood analysis or stress test, and the weather forecast was for much kinder conditions than can often singe a WACA Test," he further wrote.
"Does this new philosophy mean the selectors will all resign and let the sports scientists take over?" Lawson questioned.
"Or if Siddle was in the line-up, would Australia have bowled the Proteas out for 150? That's a hypothetical with no answer, but the path has been cleared for a rotation policy to beat all rotation policies - an approach that doesn't normally win grand finals," he concluded.