Cricket

Ashes 2021-22: Travis Head, Mitchell Starc named in Australia's playing XI for first Test

  • FirstCricket Staff
  • December 5th, 2021
  • 12:54:23 IST

New Australia captain Pat Cummins announced the team for the first Ashes Test that gets underway on Wednesday. Travis Head has been included in the No 5 spot with Mitchell Starc maintaining his place in the bowling attack.

It was a tight call between Head and Usman Khawaja for the middle order role. Head bagged the place on account for a more recent involvement in the Australian team.

Australian captain Pat Cummins (L) and England captain Joe Root (R) pose with the Ashes trophy at the Gabba cricket ground ahead of the first Ashes cricket test in Brisbane. Australia, Sun. 5 December, 2021 (AP Photo/Tertius Pickard)

Australian captain Pat Cummins (L) and England captain Joe Root (R) pose with the Ashes trophy at the Gabba cricket ground ahead of the first Ashes cricket test in Brisbane. AP

"It was a tight one. Both really good options, really strong form," said Cummins on Sunday at the official launch of the series.

"Experience is great from Uzzie and we feel really lucky to have that in the squad, but Trav’s been playing a lot for us the last couple of years.

"He’s gone away and he’s churned out runs in England, here in Australia, and we feel like he’s really ready to go."

On the bowling front, Aussie selectors have persisted with the lethal bowling trio of Starc, Cummins and Josh Hazlewood who have picked 631 wickets together.

Jhye Richardson was also in contention for the seamer role especially after taking 15 wickets in last two domestic matches - including eight at the Gabba.

England skipper Joe Root, meanwhile, declined to name a playing XI, but said spinner Jack Leach remained in contention.

"We've got all the options on the table (but) we're not going to name a team just yet," Root said. "We'll have to see the closer first Test and how that pitch changes over the next couple of days.

"But it's a great place to play spin. It's something we'll weigh up and consider, but we're not in a position to make that call right now."

England last won an Ashes series in Australia in 2011 - a squad that also included the fast bowling duo of James Anderson and Stuart Broad.

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Updated Date: December 05, 2021 12:54:23 IST

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