Aussies pick Beer, Marsh out
ADELAIDE, Australia (CMC):
Australia's selectors have dumped out-of-form Shaun Marsh but picked his Western Australia teammate Michael Beer in a 16-man squad for the Test tour of the Caribbean starting next month.
The 28-year-old Marsh, who launched his Test career with a century against Sri Lanka last September, has been discarded after a run of low scores. His last six innings have yielded a wretched 17 runs.
Beer, meanwhile, a left-arm spinner, has a played single Test but gets the nod as one of two spinners making the trip for the three Tests. Off-spinner Nathan Lyon is the other.
"The [National Selection Panel] believes the inclusion of five fast bowlers, two spinners and two wicketkeepers will provide important flexibility and cover for any injuries that may occur in a country that is not easily accessible by replacement or standby players," said chief selector, John Inverarity.
"It is anticipated Michael Clarke will be fully recovered and take his place as captain for the first Test match in Barbados ...
"Shane Watson will come back into the Test XI, and he could replace Shaun Marsh in the vitally important number-three position, while James Pattinson's availability will be welcomed after his excellent performances during the first four Test matches of his career during the Australian summer."
Both Clarke and Pattinson are currently injured but are expected to recover in time for the first Test, which bowls off at Kensington Oval in Barbados on April 7.
While Clarke stayed behind in Australia to receive treatment on his hamstring, Pattinson travelled with the one-day team currently in the Caribbean.
Michael Clarke (captain), Shane Watson (vice-captain), Michael Beer, Ed Cowan, Peter Forrest, Brad Haddin, Ryan Harris, Ben Hilfenhaus, Mike Hussey, Nathan Lyon, James Pattinson, Ricky Ponting, Peter Siddle, Mitchell Starc, Matthew Wade, David Warner.