Cricket Australia (CA) have announced their 23-member preliminary squad for the upcoming limited-overs tour of the Caribbean islands in early July.
Senior Australian players Pat Cummins, Steve Smith, David Warner and Mitchell Starc are back in the squad after being rested for the New Zealand tour in March.
Marnus Labuschagne, who is currently playing county cricket in the United Kingdom (UK), misses out on the squad due to coronavirus restrictions.
“Anyone who knows Marnus understands he would give absolutely anything to play for Australia and he is deeply upset to miss out due to circumstances beyond anyone’s control. We worked through numerous options in conversations with Marnus to find a workable solution but ultimately came to the conclusion it was more practical for him to remain in the UK,” Australia national selector Trevor Hohns said in an official Cricket Australia release.
Ben Mcdermott, Daniel Sams and Ashton Turner, who were part of the team on the New Zealand tour, also miss out on the 23-member list.
Leg spinners Mitchell Swepson, Adam Zampa and Tanveer Sangha, and the left-arm spinner Ashton Agar find themselves in the cut.
“Mitch Swepson has been in exceptional form across all three forms of the game. His Big Bash performances with the Heat have been superb, as was his bowling for Queensland.”
“Tanveer Sanga was extremely impressive for the Thunder, and we regard him very highly. While he didn’t play in New Zealand, it was a great opportunity for a young bowler to be around the group. Along with the class of Adam and Ashton, we are very fortunate to have four highly capable spinners on this list,” Trevor Hohns added.
Wicket-keepers Alex Carey and Josh Phillipe, along with Matthew Wade, who had lost his CA contract earlier, makes into the list.
Fast bowlers Kane Richardson, Jhye Richardson, Andrew Tye, Jason Behrendorff and Riley Meredith, who were part of the truncated Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021, are named alongside Cummins, Hazlewood, and Starc.
The national selector further stated that the squad was selected while keeping the 2021 T20 World Cup in mind.
“This preliminary list gives selectors a solid base from which to choose a final touring party in the coming weeks while allowing players to prepare.”
Aaron Finch’s side is set to tour the West Indies for 5 T20Is and 3 ODIs from 9 to July 24.
Australia squad for West Indies tour:
Aaron Finch (c), Matthew Wade, David Warner, Steven Smith, D’Arcy Short, Josh Philippe, Glenn Maxwell, Moises Henriques, Mitchell Marsh, Marcus Stoinis, Alex Carey, Ashton Agar, Pat Cummins, Jason Behrendorff, Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Riley Meredith, Jhye Richardson, Kane Richardson, Tanveer Sangha, Mitchell Swepson, Andrew Tye, Adam Zampa.