<
>

Axed Test opener Burns to lead Australia A

Joe Burns will captain Australia A next month AFP

Axed Test opener Joe Burns has been named in the Australia A squad to play a pair of four-day matches against India A in Brisbane next month. Burns played the first two Tests of the recent series in Sri Lanka but was dropped for the final match, and might find it hard to squeeze back in for the start of the home summer given that his replacement Shaun Marsh scored a century in Colombo.

Burns will captain Australia A in the second match and will be vice-captain to Peter Handscomb for the first game. He will be joined in the team for the second of the two games by fellow Test squad members Jon Holland, who made his debut in Sri Lanka, and fast bowler Jackson Bird, who did not play a Test on the tour.

Victoria opener Travis Dean has been named in the squad for both matches after a remarkable debut summer in which he scored a century in each innings of his Sheffield Shield debut - the first man in history to achieve that feat - and another in the final. Back in May, Dean had been named in the expanded squad for this winter's Australia A games, but he is yet to play.

Three men from outside that initial squad have been named for these two matches: Tasmania batsman Beau Webster, and the Western Australia pair of fast bowler David Moody and allrounder Hilton Cartwright. Webster, 22, scored the first two first-class hundreds of his career during the 2015-16 summer and finished with 494 runs at 32.93 in the Sheffield Shield.

Moody, 21, the nephew of former Australia player Tom Moody, picked up 18 Shield wickets at 46.44 last season. His Zimbabwe-born state team-mate Cartwright, 24, made 409 runs at 68.16 in last season's Shield competition, including his maiden hundred, and also picked up eight wickets at 27.75 with his medium-pacers.

"David Moody and Hilton Cartwright were not previously named in the wider Australia A squad, but due to call-ups to the national side, they now have an opportunity to impress in the final matches of the series," national selector Rod Marsh said. "Joe Burns will join both matches to give him further opportunity, and also have the chance to play a leadership role as vice-captain in the first match, then captain of the second.

"Peter Handscomb proved himself in Australia A's victory over South Africa A in the longer format and will benefit from having a further leadership role in the first match before returning to Victoria to refresh ahead of the domestic season.

"The final two matches of the series provides us a good chance to view other upcoming talent that we firmly believe deserve their selection and have the potential to be next in line to play at a national level. Those not named in these squads, who previously played in the four-day and one-day matches will now return to their states to allow for time to refresh ahead of the Matador Cup."

The two matches against India A will be played at Allan Border Field, starting on September 8 and September 15 respectively.

Squad for first match Peter Handscomb (capt), Joe Burns (vice-capt), Cameron Bancroft, Travis Dean, David Moody, Kane Richardson, Chadd Sayers, Marcus Stoinis, Mitch Swepson, Beau Webster, Sam Whiteman, Daniel Worrall.

Squad for second match Joe Burns (capt), Kurtis Patterson (vice-capt), Jackson Bird, Hilton Cartwright, Travis Dean, Sam Heazlett, Jon Holland, David Moody, Kane Richardson, Chadd Sayers, Beau Webster, Sam Whiteman.