After all the speculations, Cricket Australia (CA) has named a 17-man squad for the upcoming Ashes versus England. The five-match Test series gets underway on August 1 with the opening encounter at the Edgbaston in Birmingham. The Aussies, captained by wicketkeeper Tim Paine, will also be looking to win the Ashes in England for the first time since 2001.
David Warner, Cameron Bancroft, and Steve Smith made it to the squad for the first time since the shambolic ball-tampering saga that turned their career over. Mitchell Marsh has also been recalled into the squad. Uncapped Michael Neser was also picked and he’ll have Mitchell Starc, Pat Cummins, Peter Siddle and James Pattinson for the company in the fast bowling department.
Pattinson last donned the Baggy Green way back in February 2016 in Christchurch. Matthew Wade and Marnus Labuschagne have earned selection on the basis of some sterling shows in domestic cricket and on Australia A’s tour of England.
Wade edged Alex Carey as the reserve wicketkeeper. Usman Khawaja, who continues to rehabilitate his injured hamstring, has been named as well. Marcus Harris also returns with the likes of Joe Burns and Kurtis Patterson unlucky to miss out.
We have had excellent preparations for this series, says chief selector
“It has been a difficult task to reduce the 25-player squad here in Southampton down to 17 and those who have not made the final Ashes party are all desperately unlucky. However, that problem also highlights that we have a degree of depth to select from and that is a terrific positive,” national selector Trevor Hohns was quoted as saying in cricket.com.au.
“We have had excellent preparations for this series, with eight players from this squad forming part of the Australia A tour that has been in the UK for more than a month, six who took part in the ICC Cricket World Cup, and three who have been playing county cricket. It means the players are acclimatised and ready for the first Test,” he added.
Here is Australia’s squad
Tim Paine (c), Cameron Bancroft, Pat Cummins, Marcus Harris, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Michael Neser, James Pattinson, Peter Siddle, Steven Smith, Mitchell Starc, Matthew Wade, David Warner.
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