March 4, 2002

ACB announces one-day international squad for Travelex Tour of South Africa and Zimbabwe

Australian Cricket Board (ACB) Chief Executive Officer James Sutherland today announced that the National Selection Panel had chosen the following squad for the one-day international leg of the 2002 Travelex Tour of South Africa and Zimbabwe.

  • RICKY PONTING (captain)
  • ADAM GILCHRIST (vice-captain)

Australia will play seven one-day internationals in South Africa, beginning in Johannesburg on 22 March. Ricky Ponting's team will then play another three matches in Zimbabwe starting in Harare on 13 April.

Commenting on the 15-man squad chosen, Chairman of selectors Trevor Hohns said: "We think we have chosen a squad that has a good mix of youth and experience and giving the side a chance to play together in South Africa and Zimbabwe will prepare it well for next year's World Cup.

"The squad should provide sufficient depth for the 10 one-day internationals and allow some new members of the team to gain a real taste of cricket at this level.

"There have been some notable omissions from the side, including that of Mark Waugh.

"Mark has been an outstanding player for Australia at the one-day level, one of our finest, which made the decision to leave him out of this squad a difficult one.

"However, given the enviable depth of talented cricketers around the country, we feel that the time is now right to introduce the next generation of players into the side."

Stephen Waugh, Justin Langer and Stuart MacGill are the other members of the current touring party who will return to Australia at the end of the three-Test series.

Twenty-year-old Queensland Bulls right-arm off-spinner Nathan Hauritz has been included in the Australian squad, gaining national selection for the first time.

Hauritz, who made his debut for the Queensland Bulls in an ING Cup match against the Victorian Bushrangers in January 2001, made his first-class debut in October 2001, also against Victoria.

In domestic limited-overs cricket, Hauritz took 17 wickets at 19.76 during this season's ING Cup to finish fourth on the wicket-takers list. His best figures of 4-47 came against the New South Wales (NSW Blues) in the competition final at The Gabba in Brisbane two weeks ago.

He has claimed 16 Pura Cup wickets this season, including best figures of 4-100 in the match against the Blues currently taking place at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG).

Commenting on Hauritz's one-day international squad selection, Hohns said: "Nathan is an exciting young player who has impressed for some time. He has bowled with maturity for Queensland, and deserves his chance to play at this level.

"He will offer some added variety in the area of spin-bowling, providing us with another genuine option as we look towards the World Cup.

"Like Shane Watson, Nathan is only a young player but given the chance to be part of this squad, he will return an improved cricketer."

Hauritz, a former Australian under-19 representative, and captain in 2000-01, attended the Commonwealth Bank Cricket Academy with Watson.

Watson, who is already on the 2002 Travelex Tour of South Africa and Zimbabwe as part of the Test squad, will remain with the Australian side for the 10 one-day internationals.

Upon Watson's selection, Hohns commented: "The idea behind Shane's selection for the Test leg of this tour was to provide him with international experience, as we look to develop him as a quality all-rounder.

"He has been around the Test side for a month now, and it is important for his development that he is exposed to one-day international cricket as well.

"He has been impressive for the Tasmanian Tigers in the ING Cup and was also part of the Australia A unit earlier in the year. We feel that he can be a valuable contributor at one-day international level," Hohns said.

Other notable selections include Queensland Bulls opener Jimmy Maher who returns to one-day international cricket for the first time since 1997-98, when he represented Australia in two Carlton & United Series matches (against New Zealand in Sydney and against South Africa in Perth).

Maher, 28, has dominated this year's Pura Cup and ING Cup competitions. The left-hander is the leading run-scorer in the domestic first-class competition having notched up 1071 runs from nine matches, including 198 in the Bulls' match against the NSW Blues, currently taking place at the SCG.

He finished as the fifth highest run-scorer in the ING Cup, making 391 runs in his 11 matches for the state.

In Australia A's two matches against New Zealand and South Africa in January, Maher's form was also impressive, scoring 42 and 94.

Hohns commented: "Jimmy has performed so well for the Queensland Bulls over the past couple of seasons that he has really forced his way into the Australian squad.

"He has continued to make runs at a rapid rate which is what we are looking for as we introduce new blood into the squad."

Fellow left-handed Queensland Bulls batsman Matthew Hayden will remain with the Australian squad after being overlooked for the second-half of the VB Series against New Zealand and South Africa.

Hayden has made 808 one-day international runs in his 29 one-day internationals so far.

NSW Blues batsman Michael Bevan and Victorian Bushrangers all-rounder Ian Harvey will also travel to South Africa as part of the squad.

Players will depart for the one-day international leg of the 2002 Travelex Tour of South Africa and Zimbabwe on 17 March.