LONDON, ENGLAND - AUGUST 18: Marnus Labuschagne of Australia reacts after facing his first ball from Jofra Archer of England during day five of the 2nd Specsavers Ashes Test between England and Australia at Lord's Cricket Ground on August 18, 2019 in London, England. (Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

Former Australian opening batsman Ed Cowan believes moving Marnus Labuschagne further up the batting order to pair with David Warner could be the answer selectors are looking for ahead of Friday's fifth Ashes Test.

With current opener Marcus Harris facing a growing reality that his place in Justin Langer's XI is up for grabs, Cowan has offered a left-field option for Australia to consider.

Usman Khawaja's stunning pair of centuries in the Sydney Test, coupled by Travis Head's return to the XI has placed many to believe Khawaja is the man to replace Harris and return to the top of the batting order.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - JANUARY 04: Usman Khawaja of Australia and Marcus Harris of Australia leave the field at the end of play during day two of the Fourth Test match in the series between Australia and India at Sydney Cricket Ground on January 04, 2019 in Sydney, Australia. (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images)

However, Cowan has other ideas, with the New South Welshman believing Labuschagne should move up the order from first drop, with Steve Smith moving into his place at No.3.

That would open up a middle-order spot for Khawaja to retain, with Head returning to his traditional place at No.5

“It’s so easy to say he used to open the batting and has Test hundreds opening the batting,” Cowan told the ABC's The Grandstand Cricket Podcast.

“That’s a former life for Usman. He’s now fundamentally a middle-order player...

“If I was the sole selector I’d be going to Marnus and saying, ‘mate, you’re opening the batting this week’ and Usman bats at 4, Head at 5, and all of a sudden you’ve got your best batsmen playing in the Test match.

“Imagine it’s 1-0 ... It doesn’t matter if you’re opening the batting or batting at No.3. It’s much the same role you are prepared to bat.

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“I don’t think it’s a long term solve although it might be. Justin Langer started his Test career as a No.3. David Boon did at No.3. There are lots of examples of great No.3s becoming great Test openers, so it’s not out of the realm of possibility.”

Labuschagne hasn't opened the batting for Australia in the Test format, however the Queensland star did pair with Aaron Finch in an ODI match against India in 2020, where he scored just the seven runs.

Australia are set to confirm their side for the final Test of the summer in the coming days, with the selections of Harris, Khawaja and bowling pair Mitchell Starc and Scott Boland set to be of great focus.