Cricket Australia’s National Selection Panel has announced the 15-man squad to represent Australia at the International Cricket Council (ICC) Cricket World Cup 2015 to be played in Australia and New Zealand in February and March. The same squad will also take part in the One Day International Tri Series against India and England prior to the World Cup. Commenting on the World Cup squad, National Selector Rod Marsh said, “This group has played a major role in getting Australia back to number one in ODI cricket and we feel we have the right mix of players to represent our country on the biggest stage of all. These players have really gelled over the past 18 months with their preparation geared towards giving us the best chance of winning a World Cup on home soil. Captain Michael Clarke will lead our World Cup campaign should he recover from his injury. He is one of the world’s best batsmen and we want to give him every chance to prove his fitness for a tournament as important as this one. Our medical staff are pleased with his progress following hamstring surgery in December and he continues to undergo thorough rehabilitation work with a view to being ready to play an important role in the World Cup. We have said that if Michael has not recovered by our second match of the tournament against Bangladesh on 21 February, we will replace him in the squad. He understands that and is working tirelessly with medical staff to get back to fitness.”
A standby player for Clarke has not been named however Marsh said that if Clarke became unavailable, George Bailey would captain the side in his absence. Marsh said Western Australian all-rounder Mitchell Marsh is on track to be fit for the start of the World Cup, “Mitchell is progressing well with his rehab and we expect him to be available at some stage during the Tri Series with the aim to have him well prepared for the World Cup.” Tasmanian Xavier Doherty has been selected as the squad’s specialist spinner for the tournament.
Australia is aiming to claim a record fifth ICC Cricket World Cup after winning the tournament in India in 1987, England in 1999, South Africa in 2003 and the West Indies in 2007. Australia is placed in Pool A and will start its campaign against England in Melbourne on February 14.
Australia’a squad for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2015
Michael Clarke (capt)
George Bailey (vice-capt)
Photo: Mitchell Johnson
Photo credit: Francois-Nel-Getty-Images