Marnus century adds to opening questions

Glamorgan v Middlesex - Vitality County Championship
Marnus Labuschagne of Glamorgan (Photo by Dan Mullan/Getty Images)

Marnus Labuschagne showed his capacity to be an opening batting option for the Australia Test team making a century for Glamorgan at the top of the order.

In just his first game of the county season, playing for a club he calls his “second home”, the batting dynamo carved out an innings of 111 off 200 balls, featuring 17 boundaries.

Labuschagne has proved a brilliant player for Glamorgan, taking his run haul to 2355 at average of 56.07, with the century his ninth for the team.

“It’s always exciting to be back here in Cardiff at Sophia Gardens. It’s sort of my second home now,” Labuschagne said before the game.

He had nicked off in the opening innings of the match, having made 23 after being put in as an opening, a shift from his position at number three in the Test order.

But on a tricky wicket the Queenslander he made the most of this second chance.

“The wicket took a lot of mental energy, so it was a different innings,” he told BBC after his effort.

“It’s tough to score, there is not much bounce out there and it’s pretty two-paced, so you can’t throw your hands through the ball and play with much freedom and rhythm.”

As debate continues to rage over whether Steve Smith should remain Australia’s Test opener, having replaced the retired David Warner, Labuschagne’s innings is food for thought for selectors.

Last week veteran opener Usman Khawaja mused that Smith may be wasted opening, because he’s the “best number four in the world, by far”.

Australia doesn’t play another Test match until the series against India begins in November.

Labuschagne said he wanted to use his county cricket stint to reassert himself as the best batter in the game.

“I’m super motivated, as I always have been, I want to be the best, I’ve said that before,” Labuschagne told BCC Sport Wales.

“I want to be the best batter in the world. At the moment, in the last year, I just haven’t been at my best and for me it’s just finding that rhythm and being able to use Glamorgan to find that rhythm and score runs… and make sure the team is winning games and that’s really my objective.”