Xtra Time Web Desk: Australia has named an 18 member squad for the upcoming test tour to India. Left arm Mitchell Starc will miss the first test in Nagpur as he will not be fully fit. He will join the squad after the first test. Australia will play four test matches in Nagpur, Delhi, Dharamsala and Ahmedabad in February/March. A squad for three one-day internationals will be announced at a later date.
Peter Handscomb, Todd Murphy and Mitchell Swepson have been added from the last Test match in Sydney while Cameron Green and Mitchell Starc have been named in expectation of successful respective returns from injury. Marcus Harris missed selection.
The squad is stacked with four spinners in Nathan Lyon, Ashton Agar, Mitchell Swepson and Todd Murphy. The National Selection Committee Chairman George Bailey said, “After a successful home summer the squad is excited by the challenge a Test tour to the subcontinent provides. We have selected a squad that provides the depth and flexibility required to adapt depending on the conditions we may encounter.”
Bailey said the combination of left and right-hand batters, four specialist spinners and six fast bowlers, including allrounder Cameron Green, offers options in varying settings.
“Peter Handscomb deserves his place back in the squad,” Bailey said. “His domestic form has been strong recently and Pete has proven he can perform at Test level.
“His experience against spin on the subcontinent is valuable and he is also an exceptionally good close to the wicket catcher.
“Ashton Agar continues to impress following his comeback in Sydney and we believe left-arm finger spin will play an important role in Indian conditions.
“Mitchell Swepson has recent Test experience in the sub-continent and offers leg-spinning variety.
“Todd Murphy has progressed quickly having impressed in domestic cricket and recently with Australia A. With those performances Todd has emerged as a strong spin option.
Here is the Australian squad for the test tour to India:
Pat Cummins (NSW/Penrith Cricket Club) (c)
Ashton Agar (WA/University Cricket Club)
Scott Boland (VIC/Frankston Peninsula Cricket Club)
Alex Carey (SA/Glenelg Cricket Club)
Cameron Green ((WA/Subiaco-Floreat Cricket Club)
Josh Hazlewood (NSW/St George Cricket Club)
Peter Handscomb (VIC/St Kilda Cricket Club)
Travis Head (SA/Tea Tree Gully Cricket Club)
Usman Khawaja (QLD/Valley District Cricket Club)
Marnus Labuschagne (QLD/Redlands Cricket Club)
Nathan Lyon (NSW/Northern District Cricket Club)
Lance Morris (WA/Scarborough Cricket Club)
Todd Murphy (VIC/St Kilda Cricket Club)
Matthew Renshaw (QLD/Toombul District CC)
Steve Smith (NSW/Sutherland Cricket Club) (vc)
Mitchell Starc (NSW/Manly Warringah Cricket Club)
Mitchell Swepson (QLD/Sandgate-Redcliffe Cricket Club)
David Warner (NSW/Randwick Petersham Cricket Club)
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