Potchefstroom (South Africa), Feb.20 (ANI): Former South African captain Kepler Wessels feels that Australia should consider handing batsman-off-spinner Marcus North his Test debut in place of bowling all-rounder Andrew McDonald in next week's first Test against South Africa in Johannesburg.
Wessels believes it is vital for the tourists to play six specialist batsmen against the much vaunted South African pace attack led by Dale Steyn, as he expects conditions to favour fast bowlers.
"It would be a crazy call not to go into the Wanderers Test match with six specialist batsmen," Fox Sports quoted Wessels as telling AAP on Wednesday.
"I would play (North) at six and then the wicketkeeper (Brad Haddin) at seven and four seamers and perhaps for (North) and Michael Clarke to bowl a few of his spinners," he added.
McDonald took three wickets and bowled steadily (1-41 and 2-32) on debut in last month's third Test against South Africa as Australia claimed victory in the dead-rubber at the SCG.
But the Victoria star was less impressive with the bat, scoring a scratchy 15, and he's facing increasing pressure from North.
The Australia squad trained in the nets at Senwes Park on Potchefstroom on Wednesday ahead of their three-day tour match against a South Africa President's XI starting on Friday.
Australia coach Tim Nielsen said he wanted to play a Test-strength side in the tour match, although vice-captain Michael Clarke is in doubt with a sore back. (ANI)