Michael Hussey. Photo by Reuters
Australian selectors have made the bold decision to dump
retiring champion Mike Hussey from the one-day international
team, denying him a farewell tour around the country.
Chairman of selectors John Inverarity on Sunday announced the
13-man squad to face Sri Lanka in the summer's first two
ODIs, starting in Melbourne on Friday, with Hussey among
several major absentees.
The Test trio of skipper Michael Clarke, David Warner and
Matthew Wade were all rested from the start of the ODI
program to give them a chance to recover from the rigours of
a six-Test summer, while injured pair James Pattinson (side
strain) and Shane Watson (calf) were not considered.
But Inverarity said fellow Test star Hussey, who had planning
to retire from international cricket at the end of the
summer, was omitted for the whole series because the
selectors were looking to build toward the 2015 World Cup.
It means Hussey will play his last day of international
cricket as the third Test against Sri Lanka heads to a finish
at the SCG on Sunday.
"Michael has been a tremendous ODI player for Australia over
a long period of time, a match-winner for his country and his
presence in coloured clothing will be sorely missed," said
The squad has four potential debutants in batsmen Phil
Hughes, Aaron Finch and Usman Khawaja and pace bowler Ben
In Clarke's absence, Australia's Twenty20 skipper George
Bailey will lead the team, while veteran Brad Haddin returns
to take over the wicketkeeping duties.
"Michael (Clarke) has been battling a hamstring injury for a
few weeks," Inverarity said.
"Matthew Wade and Brad Haddin are considered to be the two
best keeper-batsmen in Australia," he said.
"Brad remains in consideration and he will play while Matthew
has a break."
Inverarity said Hughes and Khawaja had earned a crack at the
shorter form of the game, along with Finch.
"Phillip Hughes and Usman Khawaja are generally considered to
be 'red-ball' cricketers, but their recent 50 over figures
are most impressive," Inverarity said.
There was at least one Hussey in the squad, with David
keeping his place as one of the experienced middle-order
Allrounder Glenn Maxwell, in strong contention for a place in
the Test squad to tour India in February, is expected to have
a big role in the series.
Mitchell Starc headlines a pace attack boasting Cutting and
Dean Jones will be added to the coaching staff for the first
two ODIs as batting coach with Stuart Law deciding not to
pursue the full-time batting coach role and returning to his
job as Centre of Excellence high performance coach.
Australian squad: George Bailey (capt), Ben Cutting, Xavier
Doherty, Aaron Finch, Brad Haddin, Phil Hughes, David Hussey,
Usman Khawaja, Glenn Maxwell, Clint McKay, Steve Smith,