Paine named, Khawaja recalled as Australia confirm Ashes squad for opening Tests
Paine is yet to return to competitive cricket after neck surgery in September but leads an Australia team looking to win the Ashes after retaining the urn with a 2-2 series draw in England in 2019.
Khawaja, who turns 35 next month, earns a recall after strong Sheffield Shield form with two centuries in four matches, having not played the longest format of cricket since the third Ashes Test in 2019.
Victorian left-hander Marcus Harris appears set to open the batting alongside David Warner, with Will Pucovski absent due to another concussion, while Travis Head and Khawaja will battle to take the number five role.
Head was dropped in Australia’s last Test series against India in January.
The first Test takes place at the Gabba in Brisbane from December 8, followed by the day-night Test at Adelaide Oval from December 16.
National selection panel chair George Bailey said: “Marcus has been a consistent run scorer domestically and had a strong winter further developing his game with Leicestershire. He is a good player who will be looking to build a strong partnership with David Warner at the top of the order.
“Travis finished last summer strongly, second only to Cameron Green for runs scored, and has again started the season well. He drives the game forward and can put the opposition under pressure with his ability to score quickly.
“Similarly, Usman Khawaja has been in great touch. He brings a calm, consistent and experienced component to the batting line up and is a proven run scorer at Test level. He also has the ability to bat across a range of positions in the batting order.”
Jhye Richardson and Michael Neser are included as fast bowling depth, although the latter recently sustained a minor hamstring strain playing for Queensland in the Sheffield Shield.
“Jhye is seeing the rewards of concentrating on his red ball cricket in the build up to this series. We know he has an exceptional skill set and are excited about what he brings to the team now his body is back on track,” Bailey said.
Australia Test squad: Tim Paine (c), Pat Cummins (vc), Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Marcus Harris, Travis Head, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Michael Neser, Jhye Richardson, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Mitchell Swepson, David Warner
India vs New Zealand 1st T20I: Kiwis skipper Tim Southee hopes to end bubble-life soon
IPL 2022: Sunrisers Hyderabad set to retain Kane Williamson ahead of mega auction
T20 World Cup 2022: Starting Date, Host Country, Teams, Stadium List – All You Need to Know
He will be one of sought-after players in IPL 2022 Auction: Sunil Gavaskar applauds David Warner’s performance
ICC Most Valuable Team of T20 World Cup 2021: India players fail to enter, Babar is captain
T20 World Cup 2021: WATCH! Strange celebration of Australia’s Wade, Stoinis, drinking from shoes
Mitchell Marsh thanks selectors for ‘amazing six weeks’ at T20 World Cup
T20 World Cup 2021: To be able to put up with critics for so long shows quality of human being Mitch is: Finch
David Warner: From Wounder to Wounded to Wonder, journey comes to a full circle
Writing David Warner off was like poking a bear: Aaron Finch after T20 World Cup triumph
T20 World Cup: Australia didn’t give us an inch, says New Zealand captain Kane Williamson
Australia vs New Zealand T20 World Cup Final 2021: Man of The Match, Post Match Presentation, Highlights
Get breaking news alerts.
You have already subscribed
We are now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@TechiUpdate) and stay updated with the latest Technology headlines.
For all the latest Sports News Click Here