Kurtis Patterson has paid the price for NSW’s horror Marsh Sheffield Shield season, with the Blues’ captain dropped for their last match of the summer against South Australia.
NSW, who are yet to win a game and entrenched to last place on the ladder, are staring down the barrel of their worst season in the state’s illustrious history.
Patterson has been one of the team’s better performers with the former Test batter hitting one of the team’s two Sheffield Shield centuries this season.
But his 417 runs at 29.78 and double failure against Victoria earlier this month is still well short of the returns the Blues were after.
“Our batting group have been inconsistent recently in delivering the runs necessary to establish the match positions we were looking for,” interim coach Greg Shipperd said.
“We recognise it is a difficult decision to pass on your captain but we are confident Kurtis will regather and draw purpose from this call into the future.
“It was decided to support consistent and in form batters in this season’s last fixture, with the currency being runs.”
Patterson’s axing is made even more significant when considering NSW are without experienced opening batter Daniel Hughes, who has a calf injury.
It also means NSW will finish the season without the leaders they began the summer with, after parting ways with coach Phil Jacques last November.
Blake Nikitaras has also been dropped for the final round with Jason Sangha recalled to the squad following his century and half-century in the second XI last week alongside Ryan Hackney.
Blake MacDonald is also a chance to debut along with fast bowler Ryan Hadley, with Sean Abbott unavailable due to Australian ODI duties and Trent Copeland now retired.
Moises Henriques will replace Patterson as captain for the Karen Rolton Oval match.
Should NSW not win their last match of 2022-23 against the Redbacks beginning on Tuesday it will be only the second time in the state’s 130-year Sheffield Shield history that they’ve not won a game all season with the last and only occurrence being the 1938-39 season.
It would also extend their all-time longest winless run to 12 matches having secured the unwanted record in with a 10-wicket loss to Victoria in Albury last week.
NSW squad v South Australia: Ollie Davies, Ben Dwarshuis, Jack Edwards, Matthew Gilkes, Chris Green, Ryan Hackney, Ryan Hadley, Moises Henriques (c), Hayden Kerr, Blake MacDonald, Jason Sangha, Chris Tremain