Marnus Labuschagne. (Photo Source: Twitter)
Former Australia cricketer Damien Fleming feels that Marnus Labuschagne is currently fighting his inner demons and thus, the right-handed batter has failed to make a solid impact so far in the Ashes 2023.
Notably, in three Test matches so far, the 29-year-old has hit 144 runs and with that, he has failed to meet the expectations. He was in exceptional form in the County Championship Division Two and thus, Labuschagne was expected to do really well in the United Kingdom but that hasn’t been the case.
In both innings of the third Test at Headingley, Labuschagne managed to get a good start but failed to convert it into a big total. That has been a massive problem for him in the ongoing summer. As per Fleming, Marnus’ and Steve Smith’s quick dismissal in the second innings of the third Test eventually played a huge role in Australia’s defeat and he hopes that the 29-year-old regains his form sooner to help Australia seal the series in Manchester.
“Ya, it did (Labuschagne and Smith’s early dismissal creating problem for Australia). There was not a lot in for the spinners. Moeen Ali was really just trying to dry up one end, so that the English quicks could attack from the other end. The Marnus one, he hasn’t looked himself in this series. It seems like he is just fighting himself.
“Getting to 20 and 30 pretty easy but when he gets to that sort of score, it feels like I think he needs to just keep free-flowing and the Marnus we know in the last three or four years, he has been a batting machine really, averaging 55-60. It seems like he is battling himself,” Fleming said while talking to SEN SA Breakfast.
Fleming lauds Khawaja, Head and Mitch Marsh
Fleming added by saying that ahead of the Ashes, he felt that Smith and Marnus will be a force to reckon with as England have a great record against the Aussie left-handers. However, the former cricketer is surprised to see Usman Khawaja, Travis Head and Mitchell Marsh doing so well and eventually lauded them for having quite an impact.
“We know the English bowl really well to our left-handers. So probably as underwhelming as Marnus and Smith have been, Usman and Travis Head have been fantastic and then Mitchell Marsh coming in for Cameron Green, that was a brilliant hundred,” Fleming said.