Australian national selectors have named an unchanged 15-member squad for the remaining three Ashes Test matches. The news was confirmed on Monday (December 20). The Boxing Day Test commences from December 26. While the fourth and fifth Test matches will begin on January 5 and January 14 respectively. Regular skipper Pat Cummins and pacer Josh Hazlewood are likely to return for the Boxing Day Test match.
Cummins and Hazlewood didn’t play the second Test match in Adelaide. The former was declared as close contact with someone who had tested positive for COVID-19. The latter missed out due to suffering a mild side strain in the Brisbane Test. However, as per reports, both are expected to be named in the playing XI for the Melbourne Test.
Meanwhile, the selectors have placed the bet on the same 15-member team for the upcoming three Ashes Test is testimony to Australia’s phenomenal showing. Australia wrapped up England in the final session to pocket the day-night Test in Adelaide. Even without Cummins and Hazlewood, the Australian bowlers managed to be relentless with their lines and lengths to eventually win the game by 275 runs.
After posting a mammoth score of 473 in the first innings, the hosts’ bowlers bundled England out for just 236. Mitchell Starc stepped up in the absence of Cummins and picked up four wickets. Off-spinner Nathan Lyon supported him by accounting for three wickets. Speaking about the Brisbane Test, Australia beat England by nine wickets.
Squad: Pat Cummins (c), Marcus Harris, David Warner, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Usman Khawaja, Cameron Green, Alex Carey (wk), Mitchell Starc, Josh Hazlewood, Nathan Lyon, Jhye Richardson, Michael Neser, Mitchell Swepson.