The West

Agar will come through stronger, says Langer
Ashton Agar after scoring 98 at Trent Bridge. Pic: Getty Images

Western Australia coach Justin Langer says Ashton Agar's topsy-turvy journey since making his Test debut will end up helping the spinner forge a long and successful career.

Agar has endured a series of setbacks since making 98 on his Test debut during the last Ashes series in England.

The 20-year-old was dropped from the Test team one match later, and made just one appearance during the Perth Scorchers' title-winning BBL campaign.

Agar then missed last week's Sheffield Shield win over Tasmania after being suspended for dissent.

The talented left-hander has won back his spot for this week's crunch Shield clash with ladder-leading NSW at the WACA, and Langer said Agar would have learned vital lessons over the past seven months.

"Ashton's going through this wonderful but horrible journey of being a professional sportsman," Langer said on Wednesday.

"I can sympathise with him - I've been through it.

"Marcus North and I were laughing about it last night ... it's a really tough business we're in.

"(Agar's) mindset is getting better. He'll be stronger for the experience."

Agar's inclusion means two-Test spinner Michael Beer has again been squeezed out of a spot.

All-rounder Nathan Coulter-Nile will also miss the match due to a minor hamstring injury.

Beer's contract runs out at the end of the summer, but Langer is confident the 29-year-old will stick with the Warriors despite limited opportunities this season.

"We like so much about him," Langer said.

"I definitely hope Michael Beer is here for the next five years.

"He's got to wrestle that spot off (Agar).

"Either Ashton Agar has got to lose form, or Beery has to be so good we can't ignore him. The competition is on."

NSW (24 points) could drop to as low as third if third-placed WA (20 points) records an outright win in the Shield clash, starting Thursday.

The West Australian

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