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August 31, 2008
Moises Henriques, the New South Wales allrounder, will join the Australia squad in Darwin as a replacement for the demoted Andrew Symonds. But Henriques, 21, is almost certain to take no part in the remaining two matches against Bangladesh and is being added to the group largely to give him experience around the national side.
The selectors were put in a difficult position when Symonds was sent home for missing a team meeting as it left only 11 fully fit players in Darwin with the twelfth, Shane Watson, likely to have recovered from a minor niggle in time for the second game on Wednesday. An extra player was clearly needed but the leading candidates are in India representing Australia A.
"Given the importance of the Australia A tour of India, where players will have an opportunity to press for Test selection in the upcoming series, it was decided that a young emerging player should be added to the national team to gain experience," Andrew Hilditch, the chairman of selectors, said. "The national selection panel thought it was an ideal opportunity to reward Moises for an outstanding stint at the Cricket Australia Centre of Excellence and Emerging Players Tournament."
Should injuries force the selectors to look outside the main 12 players for the remaining two games, an Australia A representative will be rushed to Darwin if time permits. "Moises will only play in exceptional circumstances," Hilditch said.
Henriques has been viewed as an exciting prospect since starring in the Under-19 World Cup in Sri Lanka, where he was the captain. He also led the Australian Institute of Sports team in the practice matches against Bangladesh in the lead-up to the first ODI. A promising middle-order batsman and right-arm fast bowler, Henriques has impressed in his limited opportunities for New South Wales in the past couple of seasons.
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