The move may have backfired spectacularly but captain Aaron Finch believes Chris Lynn can be the Australian one-day team's X-factor as an opener.
Regular No.4 Lynn got the nod to open with Finch in the series-deciding third one-day international against South Africa in Hobart but missed a chance to impress ahead of the 2019 World Cup when he fell for a first ball duck in Australia's 40-run loss.
Lynn appeared to be under pressure with the World Cup looming in May after the duck capped a series in which he amassed just 59 runs - boosted by a stunning 44 in game two in Adelaide - at 19.66 in a brittle Australian top order.
Yet Finch still believes Lynn has a future as Australia's pinch hitting one-day opener after the Proteas sealed a 2-1 ODI series win.
"We thought it was a really attacking move to try and take South Africa head-on in that power play - we wanted to fight fire with fire," Finch said of Lynn's elevation to opener.
"It didn't pay off but that's cricket.
"The way he can turn a game. We saw it briefly in Adelaide when he flicked the switch against (Proteas quick Kagiso) Rabada.
"He changed the momentum of the game totally. That (Lynn as opener) is still definitely a thought going forward."
Master blaster Lynn is known more for his Twenty20 prowess but Finch believes the 28-year-old could become an ODI force.
Game three in Hobart was only Lynn's fourth one-day game for Australia.
He has made a total of just 75 ODI runs at 18.75 with an unusually low strike rate of 84.26.
"He's still relatively new to international cricket. He's been around domestic cricket and various tournaments for a long time but international cricket, he's probably just still trying to find his feet a little bit," Finch said of Lynn.
"He knows what works best for him in the shortest (T20) format and it's probably just about finding that balance at international (ODI) level as well."
Lynn was one of the first picked for the ODI series against South Africa after being the top run scorer in the recent domestic one-day tournament, thrashing 452 at 75.33 with a strike rate of 117.70 as Queensland No.3.
"I think the way he played in the JLT Cup (domestic one-dayers) this year was exceptional," said Finch.
"Being the guy who hadn't played one-day cricket for a long time, that was really positive."
Australia's one-day team next takes on India in a three-match series in January.
Australian Associated Press