South Africa in Australia 2012-13

Wade in Test squad, Haddin misses out

Brydon Coverdale

October 28, 2012

Comments: 121 | Text size: A | A

Matthew Wade has been confirmed as Australia's first-choice Test wicketkeeper but Brad Haddin remains a "player of significant interest", according to the national selector John Inverarity. Wade was named in a 12-man squad to take on South Africa in the first Test, starting at the Gabba on November 9, and there were no surprises in the group, with Mitchell Starc included and Pat Cummins, who has not played first-class cricket for nearly a year, left out.

The selectors chose four fast men - Peter Siddle, Ben Hilfenhaus, James Pattinson and Starc - along with the offspinner Nathan Lyon, and the main question in the lead-up to the Test will surround the final make-up of the attack. There were no changes to the top six with the opener Ed Cowan given a chance to make the position his own, after beginning his Test career with encouraging but not outstanding performances against India and West Indies over the past year.

The major decision for Inverarity and his panel was whether to give the gloves to Wade, 24, who was wicketkeeper for the tour of the West Indies in April, or return to the veteran Haddin, 35. Inverarity said both men had made compelling cases for inclusion and while Wade had won his place for the Gabba Test, Haddin, who still holds a Cricket Australia contract, remained in the frame for future international selection.

Australia squad for first Test

  • David Warner, Ed Cowan, Shane Watson, Ricky Ponting, Michael Clarke (capt), Michael Hussey, Matthew Wade (wk), Peter Siddle, James Pattinson, Ben Hilfenhaus, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon

"Matthew came into the Australian ODI team in February and has since acquitted himself especially well," Inverarity said. "Matthew and Brad both went to the West Indies; Matthew as our preferred ODI and T20 player and Brad as our incumbent and preferred Test match keeper. As is widely known Brad returned to Australia early in the tour due to family circumstances and as a consequence Matthew was our Test keeper for the three Test matches.


Matthew Wade is ecstatic after hitting the boundary to reach his century, West Indies v Australia, 3rd Test, Roseau, 2nd day, April 24, 2012
Matthew Wade has retained his place in Australia's Test side © AFP
Enlarge

"He kept and batted very well and made a match-defining brilliant century in the second innings of the third and final Test against West Indies. Since then he has played and gained valuable experience in England, the UAE and Sri Lanka. As a young player, getting better by the month, he is thoroughly deserving of his retention. While Matthew has been retained as the Test keeper, Brad remains a player of significant interest."

The selectors decided against including Cummins, 19, although he is likely to be around the squad in Brisbane to prepare him for a potential place in the side later in the series. Injuries and short-form commitments have meant Cummins has not played a first-class match since his Test debut in Johannesburg last November, and with Siddle and Pattinson fit again after missing Australia's most recent Tests in the Caribbean, the selectors decided there was no reason to rush Cummins.

"We didn't feel as though Pat Cummins was ready to play a Test match," Inverarity said. "We hope he'll be ready to play a Sheffield Shield match soon, and then he's likely to come on the radar for perhaps the third Test in Perth. That's not speculating that he'll be selected for that, but he'll be ready to be in contention at that stage.

"The last Test match that Australia played, the third Test in the West Indies last April, included Ryan Harris. Ryan is continuing his rehabilitation from injury and is unavailable. Peter Siddle and James Pattinson have recovered especially well from the injuries that rendered them unavailable for that last Test in West Indies. In fact, they have been enjoying an ideal preparation for the first Test in Brisbane having played in three Sheffield Shield games with another one to come later this week."

The squad will assemble in Brisbane on Monday and will have three days of training ahead of the first Test. Two Sheffield Shield matches begin on Friday but the New South Wales v Queensland game at Allan Border Field does not start until Saturday and the Tuesday finish means some Test players might miss the final day of the match in order to prepare for the Test.

"I'm definitely playing the Shield game and I'm not sure if I'm playing three days or four," Australia's captain Michael Clarke said. "I think the plan is it will be an individual case, if NSW are batting on day four it'd be silly for the batters to be pulled out to go into camp.

"We're very lucky we're playing in Brisbane so once we finish we can go into camp, but in saying that, if a bowler has bowled a lot in the first innings I think it would be silly to overload them leading into a Test match. Pat Howard's on to that, the plan at the moment is to pull everybody out, but I know he'll make sure he assesses once we get closer to day four."

Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets here

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Posted by Meety on (October 31, 2012, 23:35 GMT)

@jono Makim - I think Siddle is a certainty (assuming no injuries). I think Patto is about a 99% sure thing. To me the question is the remaining two positions between Starc/Hilfy/Lyon. I would prefer Starc if we had Lyon in the side as I think it is beneficial to Lyon - particularly later in the match! BTW - your friend doesn't seem to get that if "many" people don't get what he says - then maybe he ain't saying it correctly!!!!

Posted by PureProtea2012 on (October 31, 2012, 7:23 GMT)

As a proudly Protea supporter. I know better, Australia will always be up for it. A series win will be nice but my money's on a draw.

Posted by cricmatters on (October 31, 2012, 4:47 GMT)

Looking forward to the contest of two great sides in world cricket at the moment. Rankings would mean nothing when both teams walk on the field in a few days time as the SA Coach Gary Kirsten said one bad session could cost either team dearly. With so many quality bowlers on both sides, I think batsmen would struggle to pile on big scores. Personally I am looking forward to see how Hashim Amla fairs this time as he seems to be in quite good nick. May the best team win.

Posted by raghavan88 on (October 30, 2012, 16:42 GMT)

@raj_24 Cummins still looks a fair bit underweight other than the 4 day match practice.

Posted by V-Man_ on (October 30, 2012, 12:43 GMT)

Let's be realistic, the best result aussies can expect in this series is a draw. There is no way this Australian bowling line up will take 20 SA wickets in every test. The Proteas have 4 batsmen who can score big hundreds. The Australian team that was picked on Monday has one and that's the captain himself (may be Ponting if he doesn't have to bat early in the innings). The best result Proteas can expect in this series is 3-0 win. They just need to replicate what they did in England.

Posted by zenboomerang on (October 30, 2012, 11:26 GMT)

@Jono Makim... Like many who reply to my comms you didn't read my post... I did say 2-4 years away which is both logical & realistic as a minimum...

Posted by   on (October 30, 2012, 9:02 GMT)

@Beertjie, I hear what you are saying with Rogers. I think the tough series are already upon us though and if Cowan fails here i'd be looking to somebody younger to come in..... @Meety, I think Siddle will almost definitely play, to me it is down to Starc/Hilfy but I don't really think Siddle is one of our best three seamers, hope he proves me wrong!..... @Zenboomerang, not sure we will be seeing Bosisto or Patterson wearing a Baggygreen anytime soon, don't forget White, Henriques and Shaun Marsh were all giants of under 19's cricket! Though Moises is looking good this season!

Posted by 2nd_Slip on (October 30, 2012, 7:12 GMT)

Gone are the days i used to look at the Aus line up and shiver with fear seeing the likes of MacGrath,Warne,Gilchrist,Hayden,Waugh in the team...funny how things change... looking at this line up, it really makes me lough to think Aus fans think they can beat SA, be it in their home conditions...tell u what, they will be very lucky to even win one test match out of the 3!!!

Posted by colossalcricketer on (October 30, 2012, 6:54 GMT)

Lol!! What a 3rd grade team ... I guess this teams gonna get a major drubbing against the Safs ....Overrated openers like Warner are no good and players like Pointing are trying to extend their already extinct cricket career... Though the bowling seems fine but a major drubbing awaits this weak Australian team!!!

Posted by DylanBrah on (October 30, 2012, 6:39 GMT)

Ben Hilfenhaus is overrated. Bowlers should be Siddle, Starc, Pattinson, Lyon.

Posted by anver777 on (October 30, 2012, 5:56 GMT)

As mentioned here picking a 24 year old Wade is a wise move & surely the selectors are keeping an eye on the future Aus cricket !!!! Bad luck Haddin, keep working who knows you might get a chance during the series !!!!!

Posted by Moppa on (October 30, 2012, 4:28 GMT)

@Stevo, also some fair points there - the main reason Starc will probably be 12th man for this Test is that he does still bowl a few too many 4-balls. I'll be interested to see if his tight and disciplined bowling in recent T20s translates to less bad balls in the first-class arena - here's hoping. Re Starc's injury record, whilst he looks a bit like Bruce Reid, so far he seems to be pretty resilient. He strikes me as being quite wiry and flexible, so hopefully won't breakdown too often. Again, here's hoping.

Posted by zenboomerang on (October 30, 2012, 4:24 GMT)

@kensohatter... I think the only ones writing off Oz are those fans from countries that haven't beaten the Saafa's for a fair few years now & are dreading the thought that we can do it again... lol... Its going to be a tough series to win with the Saafa's excellent away record but we have been slowly improving our team over the last 18 mths & still going through the rebuilding process but expect us to put up a good fight...

Posted by Paddy83 on (October 30, 2012, 4:18 GMT)

@thebarmyarmy.... a monkey can fly a plane. they can also fly rockets into space

Posted by Stevo_ on (October 30, 2012, 4:09 GMT)

@kensohatter Did you watch the the 10/11 Ashes? We got CRUSHED. 3 defeats by an innings " The 2010-11 Ashes series is the only one in which a team has won three Tests by innings margins and it was the first time England had scored 500 or more four times in a single series."

No surprise with people like S.Smith and Doherty in the side.

Posted by zenboomerang on (October 30, 2012, 3:53 GMT)

@jonesy2... Agree that there are a few possible Test batsman replacements coming along nicely, but the problem was the likely changing of a wicketkeeper & 2 batsmen in one season as this would cause difficulties in team cohesion & structure both batting & fielding... We also have some good young potential batsmen coming along - Patterson, Bosisto among others have shown potential & could be knocking down the door in 2-4 years as long as they get their chances in SS which is a major concern in NSW & Vic atm due to lack of opportunities... We really do need another 2 teams in the SS comp...

Posted by Meety on (October 30, 2012, 2:58 GMT)

@Laly Gill - his last FC/test match was when Oz last played the Saffas over a year ago. He needs to watch his loading from T20s to Tests. He really should of been ZERO chance of playing the 1st test.

Posted by Gordo85 on (October 30, 2012, 2:43 GMT)

i am so pleased for Wade. So he should have kept his spot. The downside is though what I have read in the paper it says "if there is an injury Brad will be the first in line" This is rather concerning for poor old Chris Hartley who just never gets a look in at all. I guess that is NSW mateship for you.

Posted by ygkd on (October 30, 2012, 1:47 GMT)

I know the pace stocks are healthier than the spin ones but to go with four pace bowlers and Watson as back-up surely would be over-doing it a tad. So surely Lyon is in. A balanced attack is a must when playing the Saffers who are that good I wouldn't be surprised at all if Australia struggled this series even if they get the balance right.

Posted by Stevo_ on (October 30, 2012, 1:26 GMT)

@LalyGIll - Harris and Cummins were injured and still in rehab. Cummins hasn't played any cricket since his last test.

Posted by __PK on (October 30, 2012, 1:20 GMT)

Whose idea was it to play the Qld/NSW Shield game at Alan Border field? That deck is nothing like the Gabba's.

Posted by righthandbat on (October 30, 2012, 0:57 GMT)

Still not really the ideal test lineup, particularly in batting order. Clarke surely must bat at number 3 and Watson slot into his ideal batting position of 4 (think Kallis). Ponting at 5 and Hussey at 6 just makes more sense to me, particularly as those two are the next on the replacement list and whoever comes in can get batting time lower down the order, instead of being thrown in at number 3 (think Marsh, Khawaja). Clarke has to become the long-term number 3.

The inclusion of Wade was overall a sensible choice and provided he continues to be good Australia will say goodbye to the services of Brad Haddin who has actually had a reasonable career but was always likely to be the stop-gap between Gilchrist and the 'next big thing'. It is yet to be seen whether Wade is that person.

I think Australia has a tough assignment against SA but it will be hopefully be a great series like the last they contested on Australian shores.

Posted by Mary_786 on (October 30, 2012, 0:56 GMT)

Its time for Haddin to say bye to Aus cricket, he can only play as a keeper batsman and not as batsman alone and Wade was a better option

Posted by kensohatter on (October 30, 2012, 0:55 GMT)

Amazes me how many people still write off the Australians. One thing history tells us is they NEVER put out a weak side. The Australians will always be competitive because they have one of the most domestic comps in the world and are always producing decent cricket. When was the last time the aussies got crushed... not beaten but crushed over a series. They dont get whitewashed like a 5-0 ashes campaign or fail to fight like the indians or choke like the south africans. Im not saying South Africa dont deserve to be favs cause they do its a world class team they will put on the field and the aussies will have their hands full but to be honest I look forward more to test series now than i did when the australians dominated and won every game

Posted by Rabbito on (October 30, 2012, 0:05 GMT)

In terms of openers i think nic maddinson is the best backup we've got, give him another year and by then he will be way better than cowan, and he a davey warner can open...pretty good pair i reckon....

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 23:50 GMT)

why isnt australia picking pat cummins he had great series against south africa about a year ago i wonder where ryan harris went

Posted by Meety on (October 29, 2012, 23:23 GMT)

@Jono Makim - the only difference I have with you - is that IMO Siddle is 100% locked in to play. The 12thman duties (I think) are between Hilfy, Patto, Starc & Lyon. I would say Patto is about 99% there. I would say that IF Lyon gets selected, Oz will be more likely to go with Starc than Hilfy. @Moppa - well said, I think it's also about the amek up of the entire attack, I think beinga Leftie adds so much extra variety, that he could help get wickets at the other end.

Posted by Stevo_ on (October 29, 2012, 22:55 GMT)

@Moppa - Fair point mate, and one I agree with (looking past stats)

What I see with Starc is someone who bowls a guaranteed loose ball every over, (Smith,Amla etc will be able to tick runs over when facing him quite easily) and someone who has the look like he will breakdown at the first sign of adversity.

Posted by BG4cricket on (October 29, 2012, 22:12 GMT)

jb633 - I agree that SA have the tools needed to win but Perth and Brisbane are unique challenges for visiting teams and quite different to other grounds. On paper SA look better however I think the AUS attack is pretty good and will provide a sterner challenge than England's. I think Brisbane is a great chance for the Aussies to ambush them and steal a march in the series although it will depend on the top 3 at least finishing on level terms. The quality of both attacks probably suggests a result in all matches and I think it will be 1-1 heading to Perth - will be a cracking series with Punter looking in good nick and the bowlers (apart from Hilfy) firing.

Posted by Beertjie on (October 29, 2012, 21:38 GMT)

I wish Cowan and the others very good luck because I fear they are going to need it. @Jono Makim, I've been quietly pushing Chris Rogers as a stop-gap opener (esp. for the Ashes) for the next year or so if Warner and Cowan fail to deliver. If he gets some decent scores over the next few weeks he needs to be called up, since there's too much at stake to blood a newcomer with the big tours coming up in 2013.

Posted by jb633 on (October 29, 2012, 18:36 GMT)

In attempts to show no bias I feel the SA side should comfortably win this series. Beating Aus in Aus is always a difficult proposition but SA have all the tools necessary to do it. Whatever the state of the pitches you would back the South African side to win. I think it would be a huge mistake if Oz do not pick Lyon as a few of the SA lefties are pretty vulnerable against spin, but don't let Amla at him or it will be a feast. I think Oz have got to play Starc and get rid of Siddle for good. Starc has great pace and can move the ball both ways. I feel he could give Kallis a lot of trouble if he can get the ball that comes back at him. SA are a very settled and classy side at present, my only worry for them is that if AB keeps they may not be getting the best out of his batting.

Posted by thebarmyarmy on (October 29, 2012, 18:03 GMT)

To think Aussies have any chance in this series would be like thinking a monkey could fly a plane.

Posted by Kohli_DaBest on (October 29, 2012, 17:43 GMT)

cant understand inclusion of cowan. hasnt did well in any game so far. indian bowlers got the better of him throughout the 4 match series. marsh excluded rightfully.

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 15:49 GMT)

Australian Test Cricket team is a blend of veteran and young cricketer.Its performance will be better than last two years outcome

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 15:28 GMT)

Finally the ship is coming round and everything is coming into order! Ed Cowans place seems to be the only one drawing much criticism, but i've not heard anyone name a suitable opener to replace him with? The fact is, he at least hangs around and sees the new ball off more often than not and I reckon he's just one good knock off being a handy test cricketer. This twelve as others have said, selects itself, most commentators were in agreement with the same twelve names over the weekend when named as Brydon Coverdales 12 most likely. The only question is, Starc, Siddle or Hilf to carry the drinks? Hard to say with Hilf and Starc having had no red ball cricket. Lets see what the shield matches bring.

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 14:39 GMT)

Poor old front foot lunge is living in a parallel universe. Since Michael Clarke took over Australia have not lost a test series while England this year have lost 6, drawn 2 and won 3 tests for a win ratio of 27.3%. Should, and my oh my it's a big 'if', Australia prevail over South Africa, they go top of the ICC rankings. Not sure just who it is on the slide here....

Posted by PakFan1209 on (October 29, 2012, 14:09 GMT)

i think brad haddin is a better choice cuz he is more experienced and i think australia should keep brad haddin for tests and matthew wade for odis and t20s like england have done prior for tests and keiswetter for odis and t20s

Posted by Valavan on (October 29, 2012, 13:51 GMT)

From when Saffas speak like Indian fans, do you all saffa supporters think you gonna win this series, i seriously doubt it, did you see how Steyn looked like when KP on song. SAF can be happy to square the series, but i think Clarke will deliver SA with 2 - 0 with his captaincy, If Amla and AB gets softened, rest will be just matter of time. I dont believe thrashing series as many indians speak about pay back, revenge. but this will be a closely fought series with Australia stealing the headlines. cricinfo please publish.

Posted by Dashgar on (October 29, 2012, 13:46 GMT)

It's amazing how some people judge Cowan solely on his less than spectacular test stats and say he's not good enough but judge Lyon solely on his Sheffield Shield stats when his test stats are world class. It's unfair on any player to be judged like this and there seems to be a witch hunt against these two players, probably because they aren't 'exciting' T20 bred sloggers/mystery bowlers. They're orthodox and effective without all the glitz. If you don't appreciate that then get out your best of the IPL DVD and watch that instead. This is test cricket and it needs all types of players.

Posted by ScottStevo on (October 29, 2012, 13:25 GMT)

Then English fans are desparate to see Aus fail here against SA so it doesn't make the mauling they received and the complete abomination of a year of test cricket seem as bad as it actually has been.

Australia have a decent line up and it should be interesting test cricket. Remember, it was only 12 months ago that Aus (with a very similar line up) should've beaten SA in their own backyard 2-0 barring one of the most ridiculous innings in Aus test cricket history...

I'm not sure which side will win this series,you'd most likely have to predict SA on recent form and their team on paper, but I'd be very surprised if it was one-sided either way...and being the best on paper doesn't always mean you win series, you only have to look at the more recent Ashes for proof of that!

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 13:17 GMT)

@Alan Peter Simmonds - 'no real all-rounder apart from Watson'! Aus have got the second best all-rounder in the world, how many more all-rounders do you need? As it is Clarke and Hussey can offer some fill in bowling (Clarke is probably as good as Lyon). Watson is Australia's biggest asset - without the balance he gives the side they would be in even more trouble. What they really need (and lack) is four or five test class batsmen in the wings - not more bits and pieces all rounders.

Posted by reddawn1975 on (October 29, 2012, 13:09 GMT)

Brisbane cricket ground fast and bouncy a young man called Pat Cummins who lets face it has ripped through many of the South African players in the T20 comps around the world should be in the squad dotn worry about Lyon for this test go the quicks and poor on the heat

Posted by blah123454321 on (October 29, 2012, 12:51 GMT)

you read all of the comments stating that Warner is not good enough to be a test player, however you look at his record in SS and the man has an average of over 50... give the man a break and give him time to settle into the side!

Posted by RandyOZ on (October 29, 2012, 11:39 GMT)

Great call by the selectors. Haddin is washed up. I seriously hope Starc plays over one of Hilf/Siddle.

Posted by Front-Foot-Lunge on (October 29, 2012, 11:38 GMT)

Watching Nathan Lyon bowl is hilarious, the guy has never once turned a ball. Shouldn't Australia look for a spinner who can tun the ball? It might help, they need it to overcome years of lounging at the bottom of the rankings and to stop their 'Slide' being the butt of so many jokes. Here's hoping they get some kind of system set up that in a few years' time, when their current crop of average-skilled cricketers leave the ranks of this mediocre side and get replaced by players that don't get thrashed and whitewashed all the time.

Posted by Selassie-I on (October 29, 2012, 11:29 GMT)

I seem to remember a similar article about Wade before the recent ODI series in England, we all know how well Australia did there don't we!

Posted by Mad_Hamish on (October 29, 2012, 11:26 GMT)

@CricketMaan, in 12 innings Cowen has been dismissed in less than 30 minutes 1 time.

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 11:19 GMT)

going with 4 seamers against SA would be a gamble, england were lucky to get a draw when they played 4 seamers against SA. so leave out starc and play lyon

Posted by vish57 on (October 29, 2012, 11:15 GMT)

All round weakness in Australian team vis a vis with SA. Good chance for SA to win, Australian Opening and late middle order are vulnerable; good luck to Styen,Morket & CO; Australians will fee the difference between mediocre Indian batting and bowling and powerful SA bowling, still SA batting is the weak link at par with Australia. Good context, definitely will be better than India England series where in India is capable of playing 4 spinners and no fast bowler as the wicket will turn square from 1st ball. Home advantage to win by default not by merit.

Posted by Unomaas on (October 29, 2012, 11:05 GMT)

The spin battle will be interesting. I look forward to Nathan Lyon bowling as he has been touted as the spin ace that could be the deciding factor in a Aussie win. Everyone should remember that SA neutralised Swann in the POM series? All the right handers will just step outside the line of off and milk him for singles and boundaries. Lyon will only be affective against Smith and if Smith is still their when Lyon bowls, he would have fulfilled his role as opener. All in all, I think including an off-spinner is a terrible mistake. A legspinner or Left arm spinner would be have been more appropriate. Imran Tahir would be a more effective spinning option for SA. I look forward to punters battle with Tahir. Will ponting be able to man up to his spinning woes or will Tahir get the better of him?

Posted by stormy16 on (October 29, 2012, 11:05 GMT)

Cowan is probably the only surprise here and he is about to undertake his biggest test against a quality SA attack. Not sure why there was much discussion about a 35 year old Haddin who was poor at best last year.

Posted by Rabbito on (October 29, 2012, 11:03 GMT)

FINALLY SOME TESTS!!!!.... and @rednwhitearmy....i think your the wrong bloke to be speaking buddy....you only got saved a whitewash by the usual crap eng. weather....

Posted by Crashriprock on (October 29, 2012, 10:59 GMT)

I see alot of comments pertaining to how weak this Australian side is , does anyone remeber the 1989 Ashes touring party ? and what was said about them. Bring on South Africa , and i do hope to see Pat Cummins at some stage rip into Jacques Kallis once again! How quickly we forget.

Posted by krishkrish on (October 29, 2012, 10:26 GMT)

Its going to be a race between Morkel, Steyn and Phinlander for wickets... This going to be cracker of a series for fast bowling lovers. Hilly with new ball and Starc with old ball are real threats. WATCH OUT FOR STARC'S AROUND THE WICKET OFF STUMP KNOCKER WITH OLD BALL.

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 9:59 GMT)

i think its gonna be a good series as it is australia! south africa have the upper hand but its test matches u can never know what will happen!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (October 29, 2012, 9:42 GMT)

To think of the days I used to watch Ozzie cricket with players like : Langer, Hayden, Waugh brothers, McGrath, Gillcrest, Warne !!!!!! And then I cast my eyes to the today current squad, you have to say, Its going to be murder in the sunshine!!! SA 3-0. Cant wait !!!

Posted by CricketMaan on (October 29, 2012, 9:39 GMT)

While Warner can be on and off due the way he plays, isnt there a better opener in Aus other than Ed Cowan. Seriously he is neither Haydos nor Langer. What is his role in this XI. Traditionally Ricky, Clarke have had excellent openers which made thier roles easier, but now Ricky can find himselft at the crease in the first 30 mins match after match just like Dravid found himself all through his career , something that could test Ponting.

Posted by TommytuckerSaffa on (October 29, 2012, 9:31 GMT)

Great news, oh my how long I have waited to see such a weak Oz team after 15 years of watching my beloved Proteas get mauled in Oz. Theyve gone for Wade instead of Haddin - massive error. Haddin is far more dependable in the Test format and has more experience. Looking forward to Lyons chucking his pies later too, but i doubt they will play him because he is that poor. Equally delighted Siddell has been selected, very very average seem bowler who 'gives a lot..' but doesnt get wickets. Ed Cowan and Warner are walking bunnies, lets not pretend they are world class openers - Morne Morkel is licking his lips as we speak, 2 easy lefties. Cant wait.

Posted by RednWhiteArmy on (October 29, 2012, 9:26 GMT)

Cant believe australia actually think they wont get whitewashed. I think australia will do well to make south africa bat a 2nd time, lets face it England rarely had to bat a second time in the ashes.

Posted by raj_24 on (October 29, 2012, 9:10 GMT)

@raghavan88

You are spot on. Pattinson will play Gabba test. Australia are planning to play Patrick for WACA. but do not know what cummins gained by playing the useless CLt20. He needed 4 day match practice.

Posted by pat_one_back on (October 29, 2012, 8:40 GMT)

Harsh ending for Hadds, courageous/dumb selection call. Another opportunity and if Hadds succeeds, great, if he slips, easy mid series change-up to Wade, he's unharmed missing a test or two and (assuming in the circumstance) a beaten team can use a change-up. Alternatively now, if Wade has two low scoring tests selectors and all are under the blow torch, no turning back to a 35 year old keeper selection wise, we spare that degree of desperation for spin bowlers. Meanwhile Haddin is solid to have a big domestic season, scorned old Aussie batsmen generally do! (Not that 35 is really old).

Posted by DINESHCC on (October 29, 2012, 8:34 GMT)

1ST TEST SCORE: SA 1st Innings 245 ALL OUT in 40 overs (H.AMLA 145, J.KALLIS 80 N.O. - N.LYON 9/144, R.Ponting 1/80). OZ 1st Innings 42 All out in 142 overs (N.Lyon 41 n.o. D. Steyn 5-22, V.Philander 5-5) 2nd Innings 24 All out in 92 overs (N.Lyon 23 n.o. V.Philander 7-12, J.H.Khalis 3-1). SA won by an innings and 179 runs

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 8:31 GMT)

As an ardent crciket fan and loaded with all the stats in my head from 50 yeasrs of watching, this is the most britlle-looking, weakest Oz team for many, many years. Firstly, to omit Haddin is a grave error, secindlt, there is no REAL all-rounder other Watson. No good sticking with Ponting (Clarke's pal) young Steve Smith is the way forward and Cummings would be a better bet than wood-cutter Siddle who is not test class. Warner as an opening test batsman is a joke; he has a very limited array of shots, especially on the back foot. Anyay, we shall see. I expect South Africa to win easily.

Posted by HawK89 on (October 29, 2012, 8:31 GMT)

Maybe they should of picked a spin bowler who can spin the ball. Australia may of drawn a series in SA, but they won't be so lucky this time. SA just thrashed England, and will make quick work of Australia's fragile lineup.

Posted by Ozcricketwriter on (October 29, 2012, 8:22 GMT)

My XI: Watson, Warner, Ponting, Clarke, George Bailey or David Hussey, Michael Hussey, Matthew Wade, Mitchell Johnson or Pat Cummins, Justin Pattinson, Mitchell Starc, Peter Siddle. Note the differences. Ed Cowan averages LESS THAN 30 so should not be considered as an opening batsman! Nathan Lyon shouldn't play on a fast bowler's pitch, while Ben Hilfenhaus is woefully out of form so shouldn't be considered. Thank goodness they got Wade right - though it is worrying that they were even considering Haddin, given how bad his form has been. But they still made 3 bad decisions.

Posted by 200ondebut on (October 29, 2012, 8:09 GMT)

An average side with average skill levels. A complete lack of world class players will again leave them exposed against the better sides. Would expect a similar result to the Ashes although I don't tink SA will get three innings victories like England.

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 7:58 GMT)

they r surely missing d great Gilly!!!

Posted by raghavan88 on (October 29, 2012, 7:40 GMT)

Pattinson will play at Gabba,Starc at Adelaide Oval and Cummins at WACA.Except in the case Lyon is left out and a debutant like Cutting or Hazelwood plays at WACA there will be no changes to the remaining 10 positions.

Posted by johntycodes on (October 29, 2012, 7:25 GMT)

Glad that wade got it because haddin is old and would have failed anyway. Can't believe cowan keeps his spot. I wouldn't have him in the aussie A team with an average of 20 is pathetic. Both sides will lose early wickets anyway so why not open with watson.

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 7:18 GMT)

OMG ! Can't believe that Haddin has been left out. So basically Aus will come out with 6 batsmen, 4 bowlers and a WK.

Posted by Fareen on (October 29, 2012, 7:11 GMT)

And I really hope they play Paine in ODI's and T20's. Wade is a good batsman but he can't bat lower down the order where as paine is more adapt to play both as an opener or @ no. 7.

Posted by ROXSPORT on (October 29, 2012, 7:11 GMT)

Trust the Aussie selectors to ask the in-form Starc to carry drinks while the useless Siddle will be the one to open the bowling.....Ha...Ha....Ha....!!!!!

Posted by Fareen on (October 29, 2012, 7:07 GMT)

Don't know why people dislikes Starc. He's been outstanding for Australia in ODI's & T-20 and is a bowler who always bowls full to take wickets. I wouldn't play one of Siddle or Hilfenhaus because those two are inconsistent. I've seen siddle doing absolutely nothing on the 1st day and then when the opposition team settles, he comes up and takes wickets.At least Starc wouldn't be that inconsistent. I would have loved to see Cummins-Starc-Pattinson-watson as the pace quartet.

Posted by colossalcricketer on (October 29, 2012, 5:56 GMT)

Lol...Such a weak team...A major drubbing awaits them..ha !!

Posted by popcorn on (October 29, 2012, 5:46 GMT)

Be afraid. Be VERY afraid,Saffers.You won't know what hit you - with bat and ball,and you'll leave on December 4 in a daze.

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 5:44 GMT)

Good that Haddin was removed. He just goes for the booming drive on the up through the line too much, with no footwork, and that won't work against top-quality pace. If the quicks are on top, he is usually just another domino. Also he doesn't play quality spin on the subcontinent properly (av 23, shoddy keeping v uneven bounce), so he wouldn't be much use in India, and with four very difficult series coming up this was the obvious choice as he isn't going to improve either. The correct five bowlers were chosen, but it seems as though it isn't obvious who to leave out. Gambling on Starc ahead of Hilfenhaus/Lyon is tempting given recent form especially as I don't trust the batsmen (although of course picking the bowlers trying to bat to 10 isn't positive thinking). Don't think Warner and Cowan will do much good.

Posted by Nightwing32 on (October 29, 2012, 5:40 GMT)

Ponting may or may not have gone with Haddin during his period as captain but he didn't have a say. Haddin did a great job for Australia and so stoked for the test series coming up

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 5:29 GMT)

I want to see the likes of haddin compete against steyn morkel and philankder. It will be a great entertainment.s

Posted by jmcilhinney on (October 29, 2012, 5:12 GMT)

It seems the right decision to retain Wade. He's had a decent start to his Test career and Haddin hasn't really done anything to prove that he'd do better. It would be preferable to have Wade settled in the team before the inevitable retirements start happening over the next few years. For those commenting on Starc getting a run before several other bowlers with better Shield records, I guarantee that his being a left-armer and therefore providing variety is a factor in that decision.

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 5:08 GMT)

This is the same squad I would have picked, well done to the selectors, Haddin is very unlucky, but Wade is younger and will improve the more he plays so its a good selection. Haddin at 35 will probably never play for australia again, especially now that Tim Paine is fit as well

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 5:08 GMT)

for the people questioning starc, if you look at his stats in the last year, its been incredible, he can't stop taking wickets at the moment, bird is struggling this season, and ben cutting will never really be good enough to be a consistent test bowler. the bowling lineup for australia looks half decent, the batting looks brittle, hopefully my south africans will tear australia a new one. SA's batting lineup tore into the so called worlds best bowling attack, and australia's batting are really going to struggle against a real class bowling lineup. warner not a test player, cowan not great, watson scores 50 gets out, ponting pretty much past it, clarke very good, hussey past it, wade not a test batsmen YET, and his highest fc score is only 116. Pretty much straight forward for Steyn, Morkel, Philander, Kallis and Tahir.

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 4:59 GMT)

plenty of youth going around shame none will ever get games cause the selectors are stubborn and must be receiving gifts on the side from the aging batsmen to completely destroy the future of Australian cricket for the next decade

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 4:57 GMT)

I feel the selectors are genuine in picking up the side. There is absolutely no confusion in picking up the side. At least Aus have not given priority to star value and so called the Talented people who mess in the middle. They have selected who can do things on the field and not simply be on the field. Hope Indian selectors learn from this.

Posted by HaddockinOz on (October 29, 2012, 4:33 GMT)

I hope that the out of form Lyon does not play in Brisbane, we can't afford to allow the boks easy runs that then puts pressure on our batting. Pup's golden arm can take wickets, so he can bowl some spin if required.

Posted by jonesy2 on (October 29, 2012, 4:24 GMT)

zenboomerang -- thats true, but i feel hughes will be ready to dominate test cricket soon and khawaja can come straight in and if guys like mitch marsh and joe burns are scoring lots of runs in shield then they will come into test cricket without missing a beat in the next few years

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 4:23 GMT)

Great squad. Stoked Cowan got in again and hope Harris is back soon

Posted by jonesy2 on (October 29, 2012, 4:20 GMT)

no surprises obviously and basically picks itself. starc had to come into contention. cowan deserves more time to settle as a test cricketer and haddin was never going to be picked with a dodgy thumb and with wade playing brilliantly

Posted by Moppa on (October 29, 2012, 4:17 GMT)

@Stevo, whilst it is important to start with facts and stats when considering players, I don't think they tell the whole story. Starc had tremendous potential, as anyone who's seen the unplayable inswingers he bowls would agree (or those, like Sachin Tendulkar in Perth, who didn't see one). He's also in form. Even better, he's far from the finished product and will improve over time. My gut feeling, and it seems the selectors' is too, that he has more potential as a long-term Test bowler than Cutting or Bird. When Pattinson was picked for his Test debut, his first-class numbers looked ordinary and were well behind Cutting's for example - and he took a 5-for on debut. Particularly with bowlers, I think you need to look beyond the numbers some times.

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 4:05 GMT)

Nice Ballanced squad Id have watson at 3 clark at 4 and ponting at 5 to sheild him from the new ball if we lose a wicket early although i doubt ponting would accept this however it is what most of our batsmen have done towards the end of their carears. Also i wouldnt mind seeing a verry green gabba prepared and australia going with 4 quicks

Posted by landl47 on (October 29, 2012, 4:05 GMT)

Really no surprises. Although I think Starc is an outstanding prospect, I expect him to be the 12th man unless one of the others is unfit. I can't see Aus taking in 5 seamers (including Watson) and no regular spinner unless the wicket is bright green. The side has balance and character. Whether that will be enough to get by South Africa- well, that's why they play the games.

Posted by zenboomerang on (October 29, 2012, 3:51 GMT)

Glad Wade gets the nod for the 1st Test... We are coming to a very similar situation we were at a few years ago - players retiring all at the same time... Haddin like Ponting would likely only last another 1 Oz summer (2013/14) while Hussey may see 1 extra year... Then we have Clarke who already said he will not last as long (age wise) as Punter & will be looking elsewhere after 2015, while Watson & his injuries could be lucky to be playing at 35... So from no.1 to 7 we have/had 5 players that all have a limited use-by date (you could add Cowan to that list) & we definitely need to be looking at blooding some younger players & getting them around the team environment sooner rather than later...

Posted by Meety on (October 29, 2012, 3:49 GMT)

@Dashgar on (October 29 2012, 02:02 AM GMT) - "....2 years ago when we picked a squad of 17 for the first test." God I cringe & get heartburn everytime I think about that! Thanks alot! @kensohatter on (October 29 2012, 02:11 AM GMT) - I'm a massive Ferguson fan, but I won't be happy until he gets his FC average up to 40, he could possibly do it by the end of the Shield. That said once upon a time there was a saying in Oz cricket that you are only ever about 5 innings away from a Baggy Green. @ Chris_P on (October 29 2012, 02:15 AM GMT) - yep I agree, Haddin did himself proud, time to concentrate on Shield for a year or so, & maybe franchise T20 for the same.

Posted by Stevo_ on (October 29, 2012, 3:46 GMT)

Starc with an FC avg of 32 shouldn't even be in the frame . Bird has around 70 wickets at @19 and Cutting has 100+ wickets @ 25

Posted by Humdingers on (October 29, 2012, 3:30 GMT)

Take away Wade for Haddin and find someone else for Cowan and there may be a chance to not get whitewashed. The last time a decent bowling attack went over to Australia, they won 3-1 (or whatever the scoreline was).

Posted by sidzy on (October 29, 2012, 3:27 GMT)

I think its time CA makes for younger guy in tests, bt I wud love to see HADS as Caption of T20 Squad, he is an attacking caption and most importantly he can be a part of playing 11 on his batting itself...

Posted by joseyesu on (October 29, 2012, 3:20 GMT)

The bowling looks aggressive with Siddle, Pattinson, Starc and Hilfenhaus and batting is solid. Looking for a good battle.

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 3:15 GMT)

Not a bad side at all. SA's fear of being number one might not be the only reason they lose.

Posted by zenboomerang on (October 29, 2012, 3:10 GMT)

Good to see they have kept a fairly settled side - actually picked this squad a week ago... Expect Starc will carry the drinks as Patto looks to have the selectors faith - though Siddle & Patto were not at their best against Tas in the SS game, Starc hasn't had the chance to show his 4-day form...

Posted by Shridharan.S on (October 29, 2012, 3:08 GMT)

Good Squad selection by the Selection Team.

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 3:05 GMT)

Its a shame that Ryan Harris has to miss out. On the other hand, I do really hope Pattinson, Siddle and Hilfenhaus do stay in form. Last thing that we need now is to help the South African batsmen to settle and get into form.

Posted by Meety on (October 29, 2012, 2:54 GMT)

Pretty much as expected. The last remaining question is Lyon v Hilfy v Starc IMO. I think Patto & Siddle are certainties after their efforts at the Gabba a few weeks back. If we go with Lyon, I have a strong preference for Starc over Hilfy, (although I say that whilst being mindful of Hilfy's great year in Tests). I go with Starc as he is a more symbiotic fit with Lyon's offspin. My preference is for Lyon to play, & ultimately I think one really good pace bowler would miss out! A good head ache to have!

Posted by MinusZero on (October 29, 2012, 2:48 GMT)

Cowan - encouraging but not outstanding start? I am not encouraged by a test average of sub-30. I can only see more pain for him up against the likes of Steyn, Philander and Morkel

Posted by solankibhavesh on (October 29, 2012, 2:44 GMT)

Its hard luck for Haddin who won the CLt20tital but cant make in home side test againts SA and Good Luck for Wade and this is good dicission by CA becos Wade is 24 and Haddin 36 so may they think youngster do well than experience player at home side

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 2:37 GMT)

No surprises at all in the squad. In terms of the final 11, Starc will probably miss out in Brisbane, but will replace Lyon at the WACA.

Posted by SirBobJones on (October 29, 2012, 2:32 GMT)

Open with Watson and Warner, ditch Cowan, play Wade as a batsman and have Haddin as wickie. Tugga Waugh agrees both should play. As much as I like him, let Starc sit this one out and play the other three quicks plus Lyon. I am going to be up for so much abuse on here, it ain't funny.

Posted by nthuq on (October 29, 2012, 2:29 GMT)

It's unfortunate for Haddin to (most likely) have his international career end like this, but these things happen. Great to have Wade get into the team full time. Hope to see him add to the excellent record he already has.

Posted by Jenga94 on (October 29, 2012, 2:29 GMT)

It's a shame Ryan Harris keeps getting injured, he's the Australia's best bowler. Siddle and Hilfenhaus will get a major reality check from the SA batsman, Pattinson is the only bowler in this squad who is capable of troubling the saffers.

Posted by RJHB on (October 29, 2012, 2:28 GMT)

Great decision, sensible decision, forward thinking decision. The old panel, with Ponting as captain championing his mate, would've returned to Haddin in a heartbeat, so this is as good an indicator as any that that regime of mediocrity is gone and Australia is back on track. We're not there yet, and there'll be losses coming, but the direction is the right one. And now Paine is back, hopefully Haddin can retire now and be remembered with some respect.

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 2:24 GMT)

The pacers need to be carefully chosen with Harris, Cummins, Hazlewood, Cutting, NCN all waiting in the sidelines...but the question is who is going to be the next best batsman?

Posted by ak_dragon on (October 29, 2012, 2:15 GMT)

Good decision made by ACB....!

Posted by Chris_P on (October 29, 2012, 2:15 GMT)

Good luck to Wade in his test future. He is an outstanding cricketer. I will also add that Haddin has been a grand servant to Australian cricket, it was tough to have your career overlapping Gilchrist but he has left with some fond memories of his services to Australian cricket. Despite what Invers states, he won't be back, we are already strolling onto the next generation of players & the cupboard if full of outstanding youngsters with potential for the gloves.

Posted by kensohatter on (October 29, 2012, 2:11 GMT)

Good selection. Haddin is unlucky but Wade deserves his chance to cement himself as he is a better long term option. Steve Waugh comments that Haddin could perhaps be picked as a specialist batsman are probably off the mark given we already have two specialist batsmen in Hussey and Ponting on the wrong side of 35. ive seen some encouraging form from callum ferguson who in my opinion must be next man in should Ponting or Hussey fail to fire. Should be a good series Australia will def go in underdogs

Posted by jeauxx on (October 29, 2012, 2:06 GMT)

Bad luck Hads. I can't see him regaining a spot from here, so hats off to a great career. He did about as well as anybody could have hoped post-Gilchrist and Australian cricket should thank him for it. Similarly, best of luck to Wade. Let's see a few more of those blazing centuries this season!

Posted by Dashgar on (October 29, 2012, 2:02 GMT)

Easy squad to pick. Massive contrast to 2 years ago when we picked a squad of 17 for the first test. Good luck to the boys. Wade deserves his spot, as do Cowan, Lyon, Pattinson, Starc, Warner and Hilfenhaus. All the rest are automatic picks, well done John and the rest of the selectors. We can't go wrong with this squad.

Posted by MenFromMarts on (October 29, 2012, 1:56 GMT)

Where will Watson bat 3 or 6 ??

Posted by   on (October 29, 2012, 1:34 GMT)

this is the best team that is avaialble so i m quiet happy with the selection. mitchell starc should be the 12th man.

Posted by Cpt.Meanster on (October 29, 2012, 1:26 GMT)

Hmm... a slap on the face for HADS. Now he would be cursing himself for staying on with the Sydney boys in SA when he could have instead joined Watto on the plane to Australia. Hope Wade does justice to his selection in what could be a tough series against the Proteas.

Posted by Stevo_ on (October 29, 2012, 1:10 GMT)

Can someone please explain how Starc can get a run before Cutting or Bird? 73@19.98 108@25.89 71@32.84

Posted by chicko1983 on (October 29, 2012, 1:09 GMT)

4 man pace attack or siddle, hilf, patto and starcy. lyon, is good but have to play the four quicks, patto and starc can bat as well.

Posted by Heisenburg on (October 29, 2012, 1:08 GMT)

Perfect squad, well done selectors.

Posted by Stevo_ on (October 29, 2012, 1:01 GMT)

SA will be hoping Starc plays - free runs for everyone !

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Brydon CoverdaleClose
Brydon Coverdale Assistant Editor Possibly the only person to win a headline-writing award for a title with the word "heifers" in it, Brydon decided agricultural journalism wasn't for him when he took up his position with ESPNcricinfo in Melbourne. His cricketing career peaked with an unbeaten 85 in the seconds for a small team in rural Victoria on a day when they could not scrounge up 11 players and Brydon, tragically, ran out of partners to help him reach his century. He is also a compulsive TV game-show contestant and has appeared on half a dozen shows in Australia.
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