Wednesday, 16 January, 2019

Australia announce 13-member squad for Sri Lanka Tests

Kusal Perera hasn't played a Test since the series against the Windies in June last year Kusal Perera hasn't played a Test since the series against the Windies in June last year
Cary Erickson | 12 January, 2019, 20:10

The two-Test series starts with a day-night clash in Brisbane on January 24, when the tourists will seek to record their first Test win in Australia. Tremaine, who also plays for Victoria, is yet to play in Tests and took part in four ODI matches since his debut in 2016, which was also the past year when he played for the Baggy Greens.

But he has only played eight first-class matches, and after that double ton took a break from cricket because of a mental health issue.

Red-ball specialists now running drinks in the Big Bash League, including former Test bowlers Jackson Bird and Joe Mennie plus highly-rated NSW batsman Kurtis Patterson, may also be drafted into the CA XI.

Aaron Finch and Peter Handscomb have also been dropped following Australia's series defeat by India, with batsmen Matt Renshaw and Joe Burns recalled.

"Matt Renshaw is a player with the ability to make big scores and at 22 years old has 10 first-class centuries".

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"They have been given a good opportunity, but have not produced the scores we need".

"Will Pucovski is an exciting young player who is making his mark in the Sheffield Shield", Hohns added.

While Pucovski is yet to make his Test debut, the Northcote side contains a player with Test experience: Zimbabwean Solomon Mire. He also performed extremely well in England during the County season. "We look forward to him joining the squad and congratulate him on his first national call-up", national selector Trevor Hohns was quoted as saying. In eight first-class appearances, the 20-year old has so far almost 600 runs at an average of 49, with two hundreds and a half-century.

CA and other home boards have generally proffered inexperienced teams for tour games, in the process ensuring the visitors' tune-up is the antithesis of Test cricket. Burns has been in good form in the current Sheffield Shield season, scoring 472 runs at 47.20 with four half-centuries. Playing for Somerset, he scored 513 runs at an average of 51.30 with three hundreds and a fifty in six matches.

Australia's top order failed to perform against India's versatile attack and selection panel head Trevor Hohns admitted that the side needed to be shaken up for the Sri Lanka series, which start in Brisbane on January 24.