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Thursday, February 05, 2009

Australia Named 14-Member Squad for South Africa Tour

Considering the future of Australian cricket, Australian selectors have recently named an inexperienced squad for the upcoming three-match test series against South Africa. Following their recent test series defeat at the hands of South Africa at home, Australian team is now under huge pressure and their no. 1 spot in test ranking is now under serious threat. If they lose the test series in South Africa, Australia would lose the no. 1 place to South Africa. In fact, South Africa has recently replaced Australia at the top of the ODI ranking, following their 4-1 triumph in ODI series.

Australian selectors called up uncapped batsman Phillip Hughes for the South Africa tour as the replacement for recently retired Mathew Hayden. The New South Wales batsman has had an excellent domestic season recently. Captain Ricky Ponting thinks that Hughes deserves a chance after his impressive domestic record for New South Wales. He has the ability to make big score under pressure, a quality badly needed for the Aussies in difficult condition in South Africa.

Brett Lee and Stuart Clark are missing the tour because of injuries. All rounder Shane Watson is also injured out for the series, while veteran all rounder Andrew Symonds is under suspension following his involvement in a spate of off-field issues over the last few six months. However, Andrew McDonald has been included as the all rounder, but he might have to go head-to-head with another uncapped player Marcus North to get into the final line up.

Here, I am giving the names of the 14-member Australian squad for the South Africa tour from Canadian Press:

Australia

Ricky Ponting (capt.), Michael Clarke, Doug Bollinger, Brad Haddin, Nathan Hauritz, Ben Hilfenhaus, Phillip Hughes, Michael Hussey, Mitchell Johnson, Simon Katich, Andrew McDonald, Bryce McGain, Marcus North, Peter Siddle.

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