Agar joins Warriors on way up
Ashton Agar. Picture: Getty Images

New WA spinner Ashton Agar says a step-up in intensity on and off the field under Justin Langer will be the catalyst for a strong end to the season for the Warriors.

Agar, 19, made his first-class debut in the rain-affected Sheffield Shield draw against NSW last week, taking 3-103 off 37 overs in the home team's only innings and impressing with the bat in the second innings with 34 not out.

He was one of three new players to have an impact for WA, alongside batsmen John Rogers (45 in the first innings) and Hilton Cartwright (29 in the second).

After a horrible start to the 2012-13 season, the Warriors faced the new year on the bottom of both the shield and one-day tables.

Having been saved by the rain on the fourth day of the shield match on Sunday, the Warriors' next test will come against the Blues in a Ryobi Cup match at the SCG tomorrow night.

The Warriors regain Twenty20 internationals Shaun Marsh and Adam Voges. Marcus North has been dropped after a poor run of form.

Agar said Langer had brought a renewed commitment to training and preparation to WA cricket and was confident it would bring about a change of fortunes in all forms of the game.

"We're feeling good, we've all got a lot of confidence in each other and we play well as a team so we should go well," Agar said.

"The intensity has lifted.

"I think we're just very professional now, more focused and very driven to succeed.

"It does feel a little bit like a fresh start for WACA cricket.

"It's hopefully the start of big things to come."

Agar came into the squad heavily endorsed by Langer, who said he had been a fan of the University spinner since watching him take Ricky Ponting's wicket in a net session.

Agar said he knew his time in the side depended on the fitness of first-choice spinner Michael Beer, who is sidelined with a shoulder injury, but said he would make the most of his opportunity.

"Justin Langer is full of encouragement, he's got a lot of faith in me, which is really good to know when you're out in the middle," Agar said.

"I'm going to do as well as I possibly can, give every game my all and hopefully results follow."

Standing between WA and a rare one-day victory is Test vice-captain Shane Watson, who returns to the domestic scene with the goal of entrenching himself as a top-order batsman.

Watson played grade cricket on the weekend.

The 31-year-old has, for the time being, halted bowling his medium-pace in an effort to end the frustrating run of injuries which have hampered his efforts to cement a place in Australian teams.

Josh Hazlewood, Gurinder Sandhu, David Dawson and Trent Copeland have also been added to the NSW squad to replace injured Australian all-rounder Moises Henriques, Sean Abbott, Josh Lalor, Nic Maddinson and Adam Zampa.

"We're feeling good, we've all got a lot of confidence in each other ..."" *Ashton Agar *

The West Australian

Popular videos

Compare & Save

Our Picks

Compare & Save

Follow Us

More from The West