On Wednesday, Australia named a 15-player squad for the first two Tests of the upcoming summer’s Men’s Ashes, alongside an extended player list from which an Australia A team will be selected for a tour match against the English Lions.
“I was actually a bit surprised that they named the two (Khawaja and Head). If they haven’t made a decision on it yet, I’m not sure how much clearer it’s going to get over the next period of time,” cricket.com.au quoted Ponting as saying.
“I’m rapt for Khawaja. I’ve been on record a few times that even when he got left out, I still felt he was in Australia’s top six batters. Just reading between the lines, it would seem strange to go back to someone like him and not play him,” he added.
This Men’s Ashes will mark Usman Khawaja and Jhye Richardson’s comeback in the squad. Khawaja, last in the playing XI during Australia’s 2019 tour of England, looks likely to vie for selection in the middle-order against Travis Head, with incumbents Marnus Labuschagne, Steve Smith and Cameron Green all looking likely starters.
The Men’s Ashes between Australia and England will kick start from December 8 at the Gabba Stadium in Brisbane.
Australia Test squad: Tim Paine (c), Pat Cummins (VC), Cameron Green, Marcus Harris, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Michael Neser, Jhye Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Swepson, David Warner.