Lyon named to Australia ODI and T20I squads, pacer Tait returns

Melbourne, Jan 18 (IANS) Off-spinner Nathan Lyon was on Monday named to Australia’s One-Day International (ODI) squad for the two remaining matches and the Twenty20 International (T20I) series against India. Seasoned pacer Shaun Tait also made a return to national squad since 2011 World Cup after being picked for the shortest verson series.

Lyon, a regular feature in Test squad, replaced young pacer Joel Paris in the 13-man ODI squad that will face India in the remaining two matches of the series which the hosts have already won after winning the first three matches, according to a Cricket Australia (CA) release.

Opening batsman David Warner returned in place of Usman Khawaja after missing matches two and three because of the birth of his second child. The fourth and fifth ODIs will be played in Canberra (January 20) and Sydney (January 23).

The squad features two changes from the line-up on duty at the Melbourne Cricket Ground on Sunday.

“Our choice of Nathan Lyon comes off the back of good form in the KFC BBL and we decided the time is right to have another look at him in the shorter forms of the game,” national selector Rodney Marsh said in a statement.

“Both Usman Khawaja and Joel Paris now become available for their BBL clubs. We have told them to go back to those clubs and demand we select them again through outstanding performances.”

Meanwhile, Tait and uncapped paceman Andrew Tye were named, alongwith Lyon in a 17-man squad for the three T20Is against India later this month. Veteran all-rounder Shane Watson has also been named after missing out on the ODI series.

The series will allow coaching staff and selectors to take a closer look at the stars of the KFC BBL with an eye to picking a squad for the World T20 tournament.

Tait has been bowling thunderbolts for the Hobart Hurricanes in the Big Bash League (BBL) this summer but has not represented his country since Australia’s quarter-final exit in the 2011 Cricket World Cup in India.

The 32-year-old has taken 10 wickets in eight matches for the Hurricanes in BBL|05, consistently pushing the speed gun above the 145kph barrier.

“Shaun Tait returns on the basis that he is the quickest bowler going around in Australia at the moment and he offers us that explosive option if we choose to use it. Like Shane Watson, he is also vastly experienced in Twenty20 cricket,” Rod said.

“Shane Watson has earned his recall to Australian colours through a combination of his experience — especially in short-form cricket — the all-round package he offers and the fact he is bang in form at the moment, having put performances on the board for the Sydney Thunder,” he added.

“Chris Lynn, Travis Head and Andrew Tye have made irresistible cases for inclusion off the back of individual excellence in the KFC BBL and we are delighted to offer them the opportunity to push their claims for inclusion in the ICC World Twenty20.”

While Tait and Tye are the shock inclusions in the large playing group, there was no room for former T20 captain and in-form middle-order batsman George Bailey or all-rounder Mitchell Marsh.

“Sadly we could not find places for George Bailey and Mitchell Marsh in the Twenty20 International squad but for both of them, and for others who have missed out on places in that line-up, the door is certainly not closed for selection for the ICC World Twenty20,” Rod said.

“We know what both those players are capable of, and both have significant experience of playing Twenty20 cricket in India where the ICC World Twenty20 takes place, but we want them to continue to press their cases for inclusion while we take this opportunity to look at other contenders.”

Steve Smith and Warner will only feature in the first T20I before sitting out the two matches that follow as they both prepare for the first ODI of the Tour of New Zealand that takes place in Auckland on February 3.

Australia ODI squad: Steve Smith (Captain), Aaron Finch, David Warner, George Bailey, Glenn Maxwell, Mitchell Marsh, Matthew Wade, James Faulkner, John Hastings, Scott Boland, Kane Richardson, Nathan Lyon, Shaun Marsh.

Australia T20I squad: Aaron Finch (Captain), David Warner, Steve Smith, Shane Watson, Glenn Maxwell, Matthew Wade, James Faulkner, John Hastings, Shaun Marsh, Cameron Boyce, Nathan Lyon, Chris Lynn, Travis Head, Kane Richardson, Andrew Tye, Scott Boland, Shaun Tait.

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