Australian squad named for West Indies Test and ODI series, Steve Smith, Cameron Green returns

The Australian Test squad for the upcoming West Indies series has officially been unveiled with Cameron Bancroft’s snub locked in.

Discussion all summer had focused on who would be the man to replace David Warner at the top of the order.

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While it originally began as a three-horse race between Bancroft, Marcus Harris and Matt Renshaw, Steve Smith has reportedly emerged out of nowhere and swept to victory.

Mystery still remains over who the opener alongside Usman Khawaja will be, but if it is to be Smith who shifts up it will open the door for Cameron Green to take the role at his favoured spot in the order at four.

Despite Bancroft’s prolific scoring feats in the Sheffield Shield, he missed out on a spot in the squad entirely with Renshaw getting the edge over him thanks to his versatility.

Australian squad: Pat Cummins (c), Steve Smith, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Cameron Green, Travis Head, Mitch Marsh, Alex Carey, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood, Scott Boland, Matt Renshaw.

Chairman of selectors George Bailey said the team includes the six best batsmen currently in the country for the series.

“Cameron Green will come into the playing XI for the Test in Adelaide in a squad also containing Scott Boland and Matthew Renshaw. We have selected a team we believe contains the best six batters in the country,” Bailey said.

“Scott Boland and Matt Renshaw will join the squad prior to the first Test after playing for the Melbourne Stars (Jan 15) and Brisbane Heat (Jan 13) in the BBL.”

Australia also named the squad for the one-day series that will commence shortly after the Tests are wrapped up.

ODI squad: Steve Smith (c), Sean Abbott, Nathan Ellis, Cameron Green, Aaron Hardie, Travis Head (vc), Josh Inglis, Marnus Labuschagne, Glenn Maxwell, Lance Morris, Jhye Richardson, Matt Short, Adam Zampa.

“It is a little over 12 months until the Champions Trophy and further opportunities for the likes of Aaron Hardie, Matt Short, Jhye Richardson, and Nathan Ellis will be valuable both to our ongoing improvement as a team and also further their personal experiences in ODI cricket,” Bailey said.

“The squad strikes a balance between players continuing to make their mark on international cricket, playing alongside some of our most experienced players with an eye to the future in this format.”

The West Indies are set to unveil a new-look squad for the two-Test series with seven uncapped players being named.

The squad will be without notable stars in Jason Holder and Kyle Mayers who both turned their back on the Test arena and elected to pursue T20 opportunities.

Holder, who captained the Windies in 37 Tests, including in Australia in 2015, and also toured in 2022, has chosen instead to play in the ILT20 in the United Arab Emirates.

The series comes just over 14 months after Australia won two home Tests against the Windies in late 2022 by 164 runs and 419 runs and on the back of the Aussies taking down a Pakistan team which featured three debutantes in Perth last week.

Kraigg Brathwaite will captain the undermanned Windies squad, with fast bowler Alzarri Joseph named as his new vice-captain.

“The squad has been affected by the unavailability of some key players,” West Indies legend and selector Desmond Haynes said.

“However, we have had a very strong red-ball program being run over the past year which has unearthed significant talent throughout the region.

“The selected players have passed each test given to them and must now be given the opportunity to showcase their skills in the Test arena. Australia away is always a challenge, but we are confident in our team.”

The first Test will be a red-ball fixture at the Adelaide Oval from January 17-21 and the second a pink-ball day/night contest at the Gabba in Brisbane from January 25-29.

Following the Test series, West Indies will face Australia in three one-day internationals and three T20 Internationals, and these squads will be announced at a later date.

West Indies squad for Australia Tests

Kraigg Brathwaite (capt), Alzarri Joseph, Tagenarine Chanderpaul, Kirk McKenzie, Alick Athanaze, Kavem Hodge, Justin Greaves, Joshua Da Silva, Akeem Jordan, Gudakesh Motie, Kemar Roach, Kevin Sinclair, Tevin Imlach, Shamar Joseph, Zachary McCaskie.

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