Home Cricket News Australia Announce Playing XI For 1st Ashes Test; Usman Khawaja Left Out

Australia Announce Playing XI For 1st Ashes Test; Usman Khawaja Left Out

Australia Announce Playing XI For 1st Ashes Test; Usman Khawaja Left Out
Australia (Credit: Getty Images)

Australia have announced their playing XI three days ahead of the Ashes beginner which will be Pat Cummins’ first Test as captain. Travis Head and Mitchell Starc will start in the first match, starting December 8 at the Gabba.

Head was picked ahead of Usman Khawaja for the No.5 slot after both the left-handers had made their case for selection with strong performances in the early rounds of the Sheffield Shield in the build-up to the Brisbane Test.

Head and Khawaja have two centuries each from the five games with the former scoring a 101 in the most recent clash against Khawaja’s Queensland.

Meanwhile, veteran fast bowler Mitchell Starc has retained his berth in the playing XI after all the speculation regarding his place in the side. Many former cricketers, especially Shane Warne had backed the inclusion of Jhye Richardson after his recent exploits in the Sheffield Shield. The pacer from Western Australia bagged 23 wickets from four Shield games so far.

Meanwhile, Cameron Green is the sole all-rounder in the side which also boasts the likes of Steve Smith and Marcus Labsuchagne. David Warner and Marcus Harris will open the innings as confirmed earlier.

Australia Playing XI: David Warner, Marcus Harris, Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith, Travis Head, Cameron Green, Alex Carey, Pat Cummins, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon, Josh Hazlewood

England yet to announce their playing XI for 1st Ashes Test

While Pat Cummins was happy to reveal his playing XI, England captain Joe Root kept his cards up his sleeves. The talismanic batsman only revealed that left-arm spinner Jack Leech is still in contention for a place in the playing XI.

“We’ve got all the options on the table (but) we’re not going to name a team just yet,” Root said. “We’ll have to see the closer forecast and how that pitch changes over the next couple of days.

“But it’s a great place to play spin. It’s something we’ll weigh up and consider, but we’re not in a position to make that call right now,” he added. 

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