Cricket Australia, on Wednesday (January 11) announced an 18-member squad for the upcoming Border-Gavaskar trophy series in India, which includes four Test matches starting February 9.
Mitchell Starc, who suffered a finger tendon injury during the Boxing Day Test against South Africa, has been ruled out of the first Test against India but was still named in the squad.
Keeping in mind the subcontinent conditions, the visitors have named a spin-heavy attack with uncapped Todd Murphy being named in the squad alongside fellow spinners Nathan Lyon, Ashton Agar and Mitchell Swepson.
Cricket Australia chairman of selectors George Bailey’s statement:
“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.”
Peter Handscomb Retains His Place
Peter Handscomb, who was recalled for the Sydney Test against South Africa earlier this month, has also been added to the squad while uncapped quick Lance Morris could also make his Test debut in the absence of Mitchell Starc in the first Test.
“Peter Handscomb deserves his place back in the squad. His domestic form has been strong recently and Pete has proven he can perform at the Test level. His experience against spin on the subcontinent is valuable and he is also an exceptionally good close to the wicket catcher.”
Australia Test Squad for Tour of India Tour:
Pat Cummins (C), Ashton Agar, Scott Boland, Alex Carey, Cameron Green, Peter Handscomb, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Lance Morris, Todd Murphy, Matthew Renshaw, Steve Smith (VC), Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Swepson, David Warner.