Australia has revealed their 15-player squad for the upcoming ICC Men's Cricket World Cup, aiming to clinch their sixth championship title. The team, led by fast bowler Pat Cummins, features some notable inclusions and exclusions.
One significant omission from the squad is Test star Marnus Labuschagne, who won't be making the trip to the 2023 World Cup. Cummins, who has consistently performed well, will lead the team, with experienced fast bowlers Josh Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc providing valuable support with the new ball. In a surprising move, Sean Abbott has been preferred over Ellis as the backup pacer. The spinning duties will be handled by Ashton Agar and Adam Zampa.
The batting lineup consists of familiar faces, with David Warner, Steve Smith, and Travis Head likely to feature prominently in the top order. The team boasts a strong contingent of all-rounders, including Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, and Cameron Green, providing depth to the batting lineup.
In the wicketkeeping department, Alex Carey and Josh Inglis have been selected, with Carey being the first-choice keeper due to his impressive performance at the last World Cup in England and Wales in 2019.
Currently, Australia is in South Africa preparing for a challenging five-game ODI series against the Proteas. Afterward, they will head to the subcontinent for a three-match ODI series against India. These series will serve as valuable preparation for the World Cup.
The team will also have official warm-up fixtures against the Netherlands and Pakistan before their first World Cup match against hosts India in Chennai on October 8.
Although some Australian players are dealing with minor injuries, the selection chair, George Bailey, is optimistic that all 15 players in the squad will participate in the India series at the end of this month and be declared fit before the final squad is submitted to the ICC on September 28.
"Pat Cummins, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, and Glenn Maxwell are progressing well in their return to play programs. They are likely to be available for selection in the upcoming series against India," Bailey stated.
With eight one-day matches in South Africa and India and two World Cup practice games on the horizon, Australia has ample opportunities to fine-tune their squad and build momentum for the tournament.
The final 15-player squad for the World Cup will be officially confirmed later this month, creating anticipation and excitement among cricket fans worldwide.
Australia World Cup squad: Pat Cummins (c), Steve Smith, Alex Carey, Josh Inglis, Sean Abbott, Ashton Agar, Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Mitch Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, David Warner, Adam Zampa, Mitchell Starc.