Gillespie and MacGill return for first Test
Jason Gillespie: back to full fitness
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Jason Gillespie and Stuart MacGill have been named in the Australian squad for their first Test against India at Brisbane which starts next Thursday (Dec 4). Injuries to Glenn McGrath and Brett Lee meant that both Brad Williams and Nathan Bracken were named in the 12-man party.
Announcing the squad, the chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns said: "We believe we have the necessary depth to adequately cover for both McGrath and Lee. Brad Williams has now been exposed to Test cricket, and his performance on the recent one-day tour of India along with Nathan Bracken was outstanding."
Gillespie missed the second Test against Zimbabwe with an injury, but has shown good form since his return, taking 12 wickets in two matches this summer at an average of 13.16.
Simon Katich retains his place in the squad as Darren Lehmann's replacement, after a strong performance in first-class matches this season: 556 runs at 111.20 in five games. His ability to chip in as the second spinner helped ensure that he stayed in ahead of Martin Love, who, said Hohns, was unfortunate to miss out. "Once again Martin Love is unlucky not to be selected, particularly given his recent form - however Simon's combined ability with bat and ball is appealing. On the whole we think that this is a balanced squad."
Matthew Hayden, Justin Langer, Ricky Ponting, Damien Martyn, Steve Waugh (capt), Simon Katich, Adam Gilchrist (wk), Andy Bichel, Nathan Bracken, Jason Gillespie, Stuart MacGill, Brad Williams.