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February 8, 2013
The fast bowler Nathan Coulter-Nile and the batsman Ben Rohrer are in line to make their international debuts after being named in Australia's Twenty20 squad to take on West Indies next week. Australia's selectors have named a 12-man squad for the one-off game on Wednesday at the Gabba and it is bereft of big names because Australia's Test players will all be in Chennai by then, preparing for the first Test against India.
That means the absence of David Warner (who is also recovering from a thumb injury), Matthew Wade, Mitchell Starc, Glenn Maxwell and Xavier Doherty, all of whom were part of Australia's squad for the two Twenty20s against Sri Lanka last month. Along with Coulter-Nile and Rohrer, the selectors have added Brad Haddin, Clint McKay and Josh Hazlewood to the squad from outside the group that took on Sri Lanka.
Coulter-Nile, 25, collected 10 wickets at 27.60 for the Perth Scorchers in the Big Bash League this summer and is viewed as a future Test and ODI prospect by John Inverarity's selection panel. Rohrer, 31, was a remarkably consistent performer for the Melbourne Renegades this season, scoring 295 runs at 49.16 and a strike rate of 152.06, and in the longer forms he remains an important senior player for New South Wales.
The other potential debutant is Hazlewood, 22, who has already represented Australia in ODI cricket but not in T20. He played only two games for the Sydney Sixers this season but is highly-rated by Inverarity's panel and will be competing for a place alongside several other fast bowlers including McKay, who has played only four T20 internationals despite being Australia's newly-crowned ODI Player of the Year.
The Brisbane game will also mark the return of Haddin to T20 internationals for the first time in 18 months. Haddin, 35, announced his retirement from international T20 cricket in September 2011, declaring at the time that his intention was to focus on Tests and ODIs. However, Haddin has been overtaken by Matthew Wade as Australia's preferred gloveman in all formats and the selectors are keen to keep him around the national setup wherever possible as he remains next in line behind Wade.
"Ben Rohrer had an outstanding season with the Melbourne Renegades in the middle order and Nathan Coulter-Nile has shown very good form in all three formats throughout the summer," Inverarity said. "Brad Haddin and Clint McKay are experienced campaigners and Josh Hazlewood is one of our very promising young pace bowlers who has recently regained full fitness. With the Test squad being in India this fixture will provide some more players with invaluable international experience."
Australia Twenty20 squad Aaron Finch, Shaun Marsh, George Bailey (capt), Adam Voges, Ben Rohrer, Brad Haddin (wk), Ben Cutting, Nathan Coulter-Nile, James Faulkner, Clint McKay, Ben Laughlin, Josh Hazlewood.
Brydon Coverdale is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo. He tweets hereFeeds: Brydon Coverdale
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