Cricket Australia has announced their squad for the upcoming Test series against Pakistan in the United Arab Emirates and middle-order batsman Glenn Maxwell has found himself out from the 15-member touring party.
While Maxwell has shown good prowess in Asia on tours to India, where he scored his maiden century, and in Bangladesh as well as doing well domestically in the Sheffield Shield, his red-ball cricket technique and ability, it seems, is in doubt amongst the decision makers of Australian Cricket.
On the hand, veterans like Aaron Finch and Peter Siddle have found themselves back in the reckoning, with the latter having done really well recently in the County Championship and former being considered one of the better players of spin in Australia.
Batsman Marnus Labuschagne and fast bowlers Michael Neser and Brendan Doggett have all received a call-up for the first time and as has Travis Head.
Meanwhile, batsmen Joe Burns and Peter Handscomb, who were both part of the squad for the Johannesburg Test in South Africa earlier this year, have been dropped.
National selector, Trevor Hohns, was quoted saying, "Joe, Peter and Glenn were players we discussed when selecting the batting group, but we had to take into account the conditions and competition we are set to face in the upcoming series,"
"All three remain on our radar for Test cricket, but we want them to perform for their states and continue to push their case ahead of what is going to be a big Australian summer."
Talking about tactically sound selections of Aaron Finch and Peter Siddle, Hohns further said, "Aaron is in sensational form, and this is the right time to give him a chance to play Test cricket, He has performed well in the Sheffield Shield in recent seasons, and brings added experience and leadership to this group."
"Peter is a proven performer in the Test arena, who has been in outstanding form in his recent first-class outings over in England." he said, "His experience will be crucial for this bowling group, and we know that he is a warrior who can bowl the type of long, tight spells which may be required in the conditions we expect to face."
In absence of their proven matchwinners in Steve Smith, David Warner, both lost to the ball-tampering saga, and Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins, nursing injuries, this is going to be a really tough task for the team from down under against one of the asian giants.
The first of two Tests begins in Dubai on October 7 before the second starts on October 16 in Abu Dhabi.
Squad:- Tim Paine (c), Ashton Agar, Brendan Doggett, Aaron Finch, Travis Head, Jon Holland, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Mitch Marsh, Shaun Marsh, Michael Neser, Matthew Renshaw, Peter Siddle, Mitchell Starc.
(Inputs from Cricket.com.au)