Cricket: Rogers needs more runs
Australia have wrapped up the Ashes two tests early, but opening batsman Chris Rogers still feels shaky
MELBOURNE - Australia have wrapped up the Ashes two tests early, but opening batsman Chris Rogers still feels on shaky ground ahead of the fourth test in Melbourne without a century to his name in the series.
The 36-year-old Rogers has opened with the in-form David Warner this series and the pair's 157-run stand in the second innings in Perth was instrumental in helping Australia win the match and take back the coveted urn.
But barring a 72 in the second match in Adelaide and a 53 in Perth, Rogers has failed to make starts in his other four knocks, even as his team mates have made big scores.
Rogers will be retained for the dead rubber Melbourne test, but is anxious not to give selectors any excuse to reconsider the order for the fifth and final match in Sydney, with former test opener Phillip Hughes having racked up a mountain of runs in the domestic Sheffield Shield.
"It would be nice to win these last two and everyone is playing for their position as well," the left-hander told reporters in Melbourne on Saturday.
"Probably being the batsman under pressure, I'd like to see it the same.
"(The pressure) is part and parcel of playing for Australia, but I'm one of the batsmen who hasn't got a hundred so, yeah, I'm under a little bit of pressure and haven't got the runs I had hoped for this series."
Australia have already sealed the series 3-0, but more than 80,000 spectators are expected to flock to the Melbourne Cricket Ground for the Boxing Day test, one of the great carnivals of Australian sport.
Captain Michael Clarke has pledged Australia are not about to take their foot off the pedal in the dead rubbers and Rogers said memories of their 3-0 humbling in the northern Ashes series, with its 347-run thrashing in the second test at Lord's, still remained fresh.
"With 3-0 in England, we didn't think that was a fair result but, if we ended up being 4-3 or 5-3 up (in aggregate), then we'd be happy for that," he said.
"The pain we felt after (Lord's) was probably one of the worst moments of my career.
"There will be no complacency."