India tour of Australia : Cricket Australia names Paine as skipper, youngster Pucovski, Green in the Test squad

India tour of Australia: Australia have named youngsters Will Pucovski and Cameron Green in a 17-member Test squad for their upcoming series against India starting December 17. Sean Abbott, Mitchell Swepson and Michael Neser were players in the squad who are yet to play Test cricket.

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Pat Cummins was named the sole vice-captain of the Test team, while selectors also named a 19-player Australia A squad that includes nine members of the Test squad.

It’s the first time in an Australian Test squad for Green and Abbott, with all five new faces called up on the back of extraordinary form in opening rounds of the Marsh Sheffield Shield.

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The fresh faces joined the incumbent Test 12 that swept through Australia’s most recent Test series’ – against Pakistan and New Zealand at home before the global pandemic hit –and took the team to the top of the world rankings.

It sets up a showdown between Pucovski, who struck successive double centuries in his two Shield appearances, and fellow opener Joe Burns, the incumbent who had a torrid start to the first-class summer, to partner David Warner at the top of the order.

Both players were named in a strong Australia A squad that will face India in a three-day match, as well as a three-day pink-ball day-night warm up that also includes Test captain Tim Paine as well as likely Test starter Travis Head.

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CA’s National Selector Trevor Hohns said the Shield performances bode well for Australian cricket’s future.

“Two of those many standout players were of course Cameron Green and Will Pucovski. Their undeniable form demanded selection and we are very pleased to have these young men in the squad for what will be a tremendous Test Series against an extremely formidable opponent,” Hohns said in a statement.

“Cameron has already won selection in the white-ball squad and continues that in joining the Test squad. He is a wonderful young talent who has great potential to become an allrounder of substance over time. His batting alone has demanded his place in the squad.”

Australia Test Squad: Tim Paine (capt), Sean Abbott, Joe Burns, Pat Cummins, Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Michael Neser, James Pattinson, Will Pucovski, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Swepson, Matthew Wade, David Warner