Australia announces squad for first two Test against NZ
ROD Marsh has confirmed the Australian selection panel officially has a youth-first policy, despite the fact young opener Cameron was left out of the squad for the first Test against New Zealand.
Cricket Australia’s National Selection Panel has named a 12-man squad to contest the Trans-Tasman Trophy is:
Steve Smith (C)
David Warner (VC)
After retiring of Michael Clarke, Chris Rogers, Shane Watson, Brad Haddin and Ryan Harris after their Ashes defeat in England this summer, it’s a new era for Steve Smith’s side and the Queensland pair will take their place in the top order in Brisbane.
However in an enlightening press conference in Adelaide, Marsh explained the thought process behind the squad, which also includes 28-year-old Queenslander Usman Khawaja.
National selector Rod Marsh said:
“Part of our selection policy is that if you’ve got two blokes who are absolutely equal, you go for the younger bloke,” Marsh said. “I think that’s very fair.
“If one bloke is noticeably better and is more likely to influence the outcome of the game, then you pick the older bloke.
“But if they’re not … then you must always go with youth. That’s our policy.
“Whether you agree with it or not is irrelevant, because that’s the policy.”
Joe Burns, who is set to open with David Warner, is back in the squad having not featured since playing against India in January while Khawaja has not played since the 2013 Ashes series.
Both men were named in the squad for the recently postponed tour to Bangladesh.
Rod Marsh said: “Usman is a very good player of fast bowling and is a fine technician; we feel he will make a really solid contribution towards our batting this series.”
“Joe thoroughly deserves his chance and was unlucky to miss out on the West Indies and Ashes tours off the back of two decent performances in his last Test match for Australia in Sydney.”
“He also put in terrific performances during the recent Australia A Series in India.”
The bowling unit of Josh Hazlewood, Mitchell Johnson, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Starc and Peter Siddle remains unchanged from the Ashes.
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