Warner named in inexperienced Australia squad

Last Updated: Sat, Nov 26, 2011 13:24 hrs

Explosive opening batsman David Warner is set to earn his first Test cap after he and three uncapped fast bowlers were named in an inexperienced Australia squad on Saturday to face New Zealand in Brisbane.

Limited overs specialist Warner is likely to start the first Test at the Gabba on Thursday in place of all-rounder Shane Watson, who is one of five players unavailable for the team due to injuries sustained in South Africa.

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Patrick Cummins, Shaun Marsh, Mitchell Johnson and Ryan Harris were all also ruled out of selection on Friday with their fitness to be assessed next week.

"The absence of these players obviously provides a great chance for David Warner, James Pattinson, Ben Cutting and Mitchell Starc to come into the squad and perform on the international stage and I know that is an opportunity they are all looking forward to," chairman of selectors John Inverarity said in a statement.

"Although injuries to those key players are not ideal, this provides an opening for these promising young players to come into the Australian squad and further their development.

"David, James and Mitchell have been in and around the Australian limited overs squad at various times recently and showed that they have the talent and skills required to perform on the international stage."

Fast bowler Cutting has been called into the 12-man squad for the first time while fellow quicks Starc and Pattinson have been involved in limited overs squads previously.

Pattinson took four wickets in the first innings for Australia A in their ongoing match against New Zealand in Brisbane, while Starc took three, though both were expensive conceding more than five runs an over in batsmen-friendly conditions at Allan Border Field.

Peter Siddle is likely to lead the attack when the test begins on Thursday, with two of Cutting, Starc and Pattinson likely to join him while Nathan Lyon is expected to provide the spinning option.

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Fast bowler Trent Copeland, who made his test debut in Sri Lanka before missing out on the test series against South Africa failed to earn a recall after rain in Sydney on Friday disrupted a first class match he was playing in.

"Trent has had a lack of opportunities to push for selection in recent times," Inverarity said.

"He will be disappointed but will work hard with New South Wales and I have no doubt he will again be putting his hand up for inclusion with good performances for his state."

Wicketkeeper Brad Haddin will take over the vice-captain role until Watson returns to the side, Inverarity said.

Australia squad: Michael Clarke (captain), Phillip Hughes, David Warner, Usman Khawaja, Ricky Ponting, Michael Hussey, Brad Haddin, Peter Siddle, James Pattinson, Mitchell Starc, Nathan Lyon and Ben Cutting.

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