Australia Announces Test Squad, Finch and Siddle Gets A Cut
By CricShots - Sep 11, 2018 12:19 pm
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Surprisingly, the flamboyant all-rounder Glenn Maxwell has been dropped from Australia’s Test squad for their upcoming series against Pakistan. On the other hand, Aaron Finch and Peter Siddle have been picked alongside a trio of uncapped Queenslanders.

Glenn Maxwell

Bulls batsman Marnus Labuschagne and fast bowlers Michael Neser and Brendan Doggett have all been selected for the first time along South Australia captain Travis Head. If Doggett makes his debut in the UAE, he will become just the third Indigenous Australian after Faith Thomas and Jason Gillespie to make his Test debut. However, Maxwell’s omission has been a shocker as he averaged more than 50 in the last JLT Sheffield Shield season. While Joe Burns and Peter Handscomb have retained their positions.

Talking about the squad, national selector, Trevor Hohns said, “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.”

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Surprisingly, Finch, who has been a crucial cog in ODIs and T20Is, has been named in a Test squad for the first time while pace veteran Siddle is making a comeback despite not playing any Test for almost two years.

Aaron Finch is expected to make his Test debut

Describing his decision, Trevor 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. 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.”

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Siddle will be completing the pacer quartet comprising of Mitchell Starc, Bulls Neser, and Doggett. With Steve Smith, David Warner and Cameron Bancroft all suspended, and Josh Hazlewood and Pat Cummins sidelined due to injury, there were always going to be significant changes in Tim Paine’s first squad as full-time Test skipper.

Paine’s new Test vice-captain will be announced ahead of the series. The first of two Tests begins in Dubai on October 7 before the second Test in Abu Dhabi starts on October 16.

Australia’s Test squad for the Pakistan series:

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