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Mitchell Marsh

Confident Marsh speaks on his role, backs Australia's chances at the T20 World Cup

An in-form Mitchell Marsh is ready to bat anywhere Australia needs him, but expects if called upon at the T20 World Cup it will be at No.3.

Marsh performed exceedingly well during Australia's recent tours of the West Indies and Bangladesh, where he was a pivotal part of their top-order. Though Australians had to endure defeats on both the tours with their batters especially struggling against spin, Marsh was a rare shining light. 

A string of good scores has bolstered his confidence ahead of the T20 World Cup, a fact which he alluded to during a media interaction. "I feel more confident in my preparation which often allows me to go out and play the game and perform for my team. When I prepare really well, I go out there full of confidence," he said. 

Many of Marsh's performances with the bat came at the No.3 spot but with Steve Smith's return to the squad, it remains to be seen where the all-rounder will slot into XI.

When quizzed on whether he would be disappointed the position would be taken away from him, Marsh revealed that he was happy to bat wherever the team demanded but predicted if he is in Australia's XI it will be at first drop.

"Look, I've said a number of times now over the last few months that whatever role I'm given in the team, I'll do it to the best of my ability. Whether it's at 3 or as a floater in the middle-order, we'll have to wait and see.

"I dare say that if I play in this tournament, I'll be listed at No. 3. But I think the beauty of our squad is that from three to six or even seven, all of us can float. It will just be a matter of game situation and who we think is best to go in next. So, I think I'll be at the top, but it's about being adaptable and being able to float with the guys that we've got coming after me."

Growing up on the fast and bouncy wickets in Western Australia, Marsh's improvement against spin has been the most notable aspect of his game over the past few months. He was one of the few Australian batters who looked comfortable facing the slower bowlers on the low and slow surfaces in the West Indies and Bangladesh.

Speaking on how the improvement came about, Marsh said, "I've worked really hard on my game against spin. Probably more so around the rotation of strike and making sure I'm getting off strike through those middle overs in white-ball cricket."

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The all-rounder also revealed the conversations which he had with his teammate Adam Zampa on areas of his game that he needed to work on to fare better against the slower bowlers. Marsh stated: "I just asked him (Zampa), where he would bowl to me to try and stop me from scoring. If I could try and nullify the bowlers from doing that and get the game a bit more on my terms when playing against spin, it becomes a little bit easier, you get more boundary options."

The T20 World Cup has been one trophy on which Australia have not laid their hands on and have often flattered to deceive. Their preparations for the tournament have been less than ideal in terms of results on the field, but Marsh strongly believes that they have a core group of players who have the capacity to go all the way. 

"I believe we've had the squad every time to go all the way. Obviously, our full squad hasn't been finalized yet. But we've got a great core group of players and hopefully this year, we can go one better."

Marsh aggregated 219 runs in the series in West Indies and followed that up and followed that up with 156 runs in Bangladesh. When asked whether he was in the prime form of his career in T20 cricket, Marsh stated that confidence in his mental and physical abilities was the key. 

"I certainly feel very confident going into the T20 World Cup with my form and where I'm at mentally and physically, which has been great."

Skipper Aaron Finch and head coach Justin Langer will certainly hope that this confidence carries on into the tournament, as Australia hunt for their maiden T20 World Cup glory.