Everyone is busy picking their probable squad for each of the participating nations in the 2019 World Cup. Meanwhile, Zaheer Khan has named his 15-man Australia squad for the mega event in England. Zaheer, who retired in 2015 didn’t pick the tainted duo of Steven Smith and David Warner. As both are serving bans for their involvement in sandpaper gate last year in South Africa; Zaheer doesn’t feel Smith and Warner will have enough match practice heading in the showpiece event. Zaheer has also picked Aaron Finch to lead Australia in their title defence in the UK.
Shaun Marsh, Peter Handscomb in Zaheer’s 15-man squad
The former India fast bowler has kept the blend of youngsters and senior players on the team sheet. Zaheer Khan has picked D’arcy Short, the man in brilliant form at this moment to open with Aaron Finch. As a third opener and a wicketkeeper-batsman, Alex Carey has got a nod ahead of his contemporaries on his list.
The middle-order slot looks settle with the experienced campaigners, Shaun Marsh and Usman Khawaja. Alongside them, Zaheer Khan has named star all-rounders – Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis and the younger of the Marsh brothers, Mitchell Marsh on his 15-man Australia squad. As a specialist batsman and a backup wicketkeeper, he has also named Peter Handscomb as well.
In the bowling department, Zaheer has thought of keeping the young guns – Jhye Richardson, Pat Cummins, Nathan Coulter Nile along with their premier pacer, Mitchell Starc. However, there will be a toss-up between Nathan Lyon and all-rounder, Ashton Turner, Zaheer thinks; and the last man he kept on his 15-man Australia squad is leg-spinner, Adam Zampa.
No Smith, Warner could hurt Australia
As the pair of Steven Smith and David Warner is set to resume playing competitive cricket when their ban ends on March 29th; they would still take some time get their rhythm back and gell with the teammates again. Moreover, they both have been injured and would be doing rehabs to attain complete fitness.
Another significant name who Zaheer didn’t pick is of the fast bowler, Josh Hazlewood. The 28-year old is currently nursing with a stress fracture on his lower back and is unlikely to get fit in time for the 2019 World Cup.
Zaheer Khan’s 15-man Australia squad for 2019 World Cup –
Aaron Finch (c), Alex Carey, D’Arcy Short, Peter Handscomb, Shaun Marsh, Usman Khawaja, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, Mitchell Marsh, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Coulter Nile, Pat Cummins, Jhye Richardson, Adam Zampa, Nathan Lyon/Ashton Turner