Cricket Australia have made five changes for a whirlwind T20s against England with selectors taking a conservative approach ahead of next month’s T20 World Cup title defence. Australia’s entire first-choice bowling attack will sit out from first T20 International in nearly three years amid an intense pre-World Cup schedule for the men’s T20 side. They will re-join the squad for the second clash against their old rival in Canberra on October 12.
Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Adam Zampa and Glenn Maxwell would all remain on the east coast following Friday’s second T20I against West Indies at the Gabba, before joining up with the remainder of the squad in Canberra.
Marcus Stoinis, Kane Richardson, Ashton Agar, Mitchell Swepson and Nathan Ellis are all recalled for the first match against England and are likely to feature in Perth. A tight turnaround of less than 48 hours between Friday’s match in Brisbane combined with the five-and-a-half-hour flight to Perth has meant the Aussies are being cautious with their prized bowlers, as well as Maxwell, the only fully fit allrounder in the World Cup squad at the moment.
While emerging all-rounder Cameron Green, who continues to impress at T20 international level, will once again get the chance to further push his T20 World Cup credentials after he was named to be available throughout the England series. Marcus Stoinis is expected to return for Sunday’s clash at Optus Stadium after recovering from a side strain and will be eager to prove his match fitness.
“The high-performance team and selectors have planned these matches to ensure our squad get to the World Cup fresh and ready to perform,” explained selection chief George Bailey. “Some squad members travelled to Perth early to begin preparations slightly earlier than the main squad and a handful of others will not make the trip to Perth.”
“With some players remaining on the east coast, it provides further opportunity for Nathan Ellis and Daniel Sams who both performed well in India. Likewise Mitchell Swepson was a part of last year’s World Cup squad and continues to provide good depth in our T20 spin bowling department”, Bailey added.
Australia’s pre-World Cup squad shuffle:
Second T20 v West Indies, Gabba, October 7:
OUT: Mitch Marsh
First T20 v England, Perth, October 9:
IN: Ashton Agar, Marcus Stoinis, Kane Richardson, Mitch Marsh, Mitchell Swepson, Nathan Ellis
OUT: Adam Zampa, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins, Glenn Maxwell
Second and Third T20s v England, Canberra, October 12 and 14:
IN: Adam Zampa, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Pat Cummins, Glenn Maxwell
Australia T20 World Cup squad: Aaron Finch (c), Ashton Agar, Pat Cummins, Tim David, Josh Hazlewood, Josh Inglis, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Kane Richardson, Steven Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, Matthew Wade, David Warner, Adam Zampa.