Australia have rested fast bowler Mitchell Starc and premier spinner Nathan Lyon as well as all-rounder Mitchell Marsh from their 13-man T20I squad for the home series against South Africa and India.
On the other hand, veteran speedster Peter Siddle has also not been picked, with the selectors intent on ensuring that the four prepare for the upcoming Test series against India by playing red-ball cricket in the ongoing domestic first-class competition, Sheffield Shield.
Head coach Justin Langer confirmed the development on Thursday, November 8, saying, “We know coming off the back of the tour to the UAE, a huge summer at home, and the World Cup and Ashes just around the corner that we have to get the balance right between playing our best T20 team and preparing for the upcoming Test series,”
“While I know all four have a desire to be playing cricket for Australia in every format, with a really tough Test series against India coming up, we believe their best preparation is to go back and get some really good cricket under their belts in the Sheffield Shield,” he further clarified.
In a like for like replacement, left-arm swing bowler Jason Behrendorff will take Starc’s place in an attack that also features Nathan Coulter-Nile and Billy Stanlake and sees the return of all-rounder Marcus Stoinis, who missed the three T20Is in UAE due to injury.
“Jason Behrendorff has also earned a spot in the squad after returning to full fitness. … Tactically we believe it’s important to have a good left-arm swing bowler at our disposal for the four matches,” Langer informed, “Marcus missed our recent T20 matches in the UAE because he hadn’t resumed bowling, but now he’s back to full fitness he’ll add great depth to the squad.”
Having lost 3-0 against Pakistan just recently, the Aaron Finch led side will definitely turn up with an eye towards proving a point and two.
The standalone T20I game at Gold Coast against South Africa takes place on November 17, before India kickstart their tough tour with first of three T20Is at Gabba, Brisbane on November 21.
Squad: Aaron Finch (captain), Alex Carey, Ashton Agar, Jason Behrendorff, Nathan Coulter-Nile, Chris Lynn, Glenn Maxwell, Ben McDermott, D’Arcy Short, Billy Stanlake, Marcus Stoinis, Andrew Tye, Adam Zampa.
(Inputs from Reuters)