'Defensive' Clarke says Oz team changes for Oval Test designed to 'salvage pride' in Ashes

Johannesburg, Aug 21 (ANI): Australian captain Michael Clarke has defended the latest changes to his side, insisting that they were all designed to help Australia salvage pride in their Ashes finale against England at The Oval.

According to Sport24, Ashes-holders England has an unbeatable 3-0 series lead heading into the final Test at The Oval starting on Wednesday.

The report further said that the selectors, Australian coach Darren Lehmann and former player Rodney Marsh, decided to give a Test debut to Tasmanian paceman James Faulkner to replace under-performing Usman Khawaja, while left-arm fast bowler Mitchell Starc returned to the side.

Although Clarke had previously stated that the Ashes tour is not a charity tour and would not give players, who are hoping for the best, a go, he however, defended the taking the chance on Faulkner with the series lost, saying that the selectors are trying everything in their power to help them win.

Stating that both he and the selectors are trying hard to be consistent, Clarke however, admitted that they also need to win at The Oval to have some pride, adding that if players are not performing, then they cannot be selected.

According to Clarke, his side's goal has not changed, adding that although there are a number of reasons to succeed in the final Test, the main reason is that a player wants to win every Test he plays for Australia, adding that a win would be a nice way to finish the Test side of the England tour.

With Australia's 4-0 series loss in India earlier this year, victory is desperately needed by Clarke's men, who have not won any of their last eight Tests, a run consisting of seven defeats and a drawn third Ashes match at Manchester's Old Trafford, with the report adding that no Australian side has lost an Ashes series in England 4-0 in the past. (ANI)

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