Copeland, Lyon new faces in Australia’s squad for Sri Lanka series

July 26th, 2011 - 2:46 pm ICT by IANS  

Sydney, July 26 (IANS) Speedster Trent Copeland and off-spinner Nathan Lyon are the new faces in Australia’s 15-man squad for the three-match Test series in Sri Lanka next month.

The squad, announced Tuesday, also has batsman Shaun Marsh and fast bowler James Pattinson. They both have made the cut in the Test team for the first time.

The notable omissions from the Michael Clarke-led side are all-rounder Steve Smith and pacers Doung Bollinger and Ben Hilfenhaus.

Michael Beer retained his place in the side that lost the Ashes last summer and is the second spinner in the squad. It will be a toss-up between Beer and Nathan for a place in the playing eleven. Left-hander Usman Khwaja is another player retained from the Ashes series.

“Nathan may be a surprise selection, but he impressed all who have seen him in the last year and bowled beautifully during the one-day component of the A squad’s recent tour where he was named player of the series,” chairman of selectors Andrew Hilditch said.

“He is a young man with immense potential and we feel he will take this opportunity should he get the chance to play in Sri Lanka.

“Michael Beer retains his position in the squad following his debut in Sydney during the fifth Ashes Test where he bowled well, without much luck.

“It will be an important tour for Michael on grounds where we expect spin to play a major role.”

On the the players who missed out, Hilditch said: “Ben Hilfenhaus did not have as good an Ashes series as he would have liked and we feel he needs to get back to his best, swinging the ball late and hitting the bat hard.

“We are sure he will do this and he will be very much in contention for selection on the upcoming tour to South Africa.

“Doug Bollinger has been left out of the Test squad. The selection feels he needs to improve his ability to bowl spells at full intensity and maintain it over the course of a match, particularly in these days of back-to-back Tests.”

The 15-man squad: Michael Clarke (captain), Shane Watson, Michael Beer, Trent Copeland, Brad Haddin (wicketkeeper), Ryan Harris, Phillip Hughes, Michael Hussey, Mitchell Johnson, Usman Khawaja, Nathan Lyon, Shaun Marsh, James Pattinson, Ricky Ponting, Peter Siddle.

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