Australian coach Andrew McDonald says he is “very comfortable” with the prospect of taking five bowlers into the final Test against South Africa at the SCG.

However, McDonald said all selection options remained on the table, with Australia having already claimed the series victory ahead of the third Test, which starts on Wednesday.

The Test at the spin-friendly SCG sparks a yearly debate as to whether Australia should reconfigure its traditional bowling set-up.

This year, the discussion is more pertinent, given the upcoming four-Test tour of India.

After Mitchell Starc and Cameron Green were ruled out of the SCG Test due to injury, McDonald has called spin-bowling all-rounder Ashton Agar into his squad.

“Game time at Test level is always beneficial and, if it does have a connection to a tour in the future, then no doubt it makes sense,” McDonald said.

McDonald would not guarantee a fifth Test cap for Agar, while adding it was not essential to downsize the pace attack if he did include the left-hander in the side.

Alex Carey posted his first Test century batting at seven in Melbourne, and McDonald said the performance had given him confidence the wicketkeeper could jump up the order to make way for five bowlers if required.

If McDonald does take that option, it would mark the first time Australia has played five specialist bowlers in a home Test since 2013.

“There are so many options, depending on what the surface offers in terms of the balance of the attack,” McDonald said.

“It could be two spinners, two quicks. We could play a slightly more aggressive team, with Alex Carey going to six and play five bowlers.

“Or we could play probably what we’d call a normal structure for Australia where it’s three quicks and one spinner and some part-time spin options to help out.”

Playing five bowlers could also open up a spot for Western Australian quick Lance Morris, who was called into the squad ahead of the second Test against West Indies last month.

While captain Pat Cummins, Scott Boland and Josh Hazlewood are the likeliest quicks to be picked in a five-bowler scenario, Morris’s blistering pace is a point of difference and would make him a fitting replacement for Starc.

“All scenarios are on the table,” McDonald said.

“If we feel as though we need some air-speed, then Lance is the obvious one. The conditions will determine that.”

AAP

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