New South Wales batsman Phillip Hughes has been recalled and bowlers Ryan Harris and Steven Smith have also been called up for Australia's two-Test series in New Zealand.
The series gets underway on 19th March in Wellington before moving on to Hamiton on 27th March and the Australian selectors have named a 14-man squad which also includes Michael Clarke, who recently returned to Australia during the ongoing One-Day International series.
Hughes and Smith have earnt their places on the back of solid form in the Sheffield Shield while Harris has impressed since returning to the limited overs side earlier in the summer.
“The NSP (National Selection Panel) today announced a 14-man squad for the two Test matches on Australia’s VB Tour of New Zealand," NSP chairman Andrew Hilditch said.
“The core of the squad is the Australian Test team that performed so well during the Australian summer in defeating West Indies and Pakistan.
“Ryan Harris, having overcome injuries at the start of the season, has played really well for Australia in the shorter formats of the game. The NSP are confident that if Ryan gets an opportunity he has the ability to have an impact for Australia in what will be a very hard Test series against New Zealand.
“Phillip Hughes has also been in excellent form at state level and richly deserves his selection on the back of another fantastic season in the Weet-Bix Sheffield Shield.
“Steve Smith has had an excellent Shield season, including a big century against Tasmania recently, and of course has already demonstrated his ability to cope with the pressure of international cricket. He adds great flexibility to the squad with his exciting stroke-play, leg-spin bowling and gifted fielding.”
Australia Test squad: Ricky Ponting (captain), Michael Clarke (vice-captain), Doug Bollinger, Brad Haddin, Nathan Hauritz, Ryan Harris, Phillip Hughes, Mike Hussey, Mitchell Johnson, Clint McKay, Marcus North, Steven Smith, Shane Watson
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