Queensland Bulls have named Ashes trio for Shield opener
The Queensland Bulls have named Ashes squad trio Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne and Michael Neser for this week’s opening Marsh Sheffield Shield game against NSW at the Gabba.
The trio were in action last week for Queensland in the Marsh One Day Cup in their first playing engagement since Australia retained the Ashes in England.
They will come up against several Ashes squad teammates in the NSW Blues line-up in the opening first class game of the season that gets underway from Thursday.
The 12-man squad also includes Australian limited overs pace bowler Billy Stanlake who finished last season with two Shield appearances for the Bulls and is line to play his fifth first class match for Queensland.
Fellow paceman Cameron Gannon and leg-spinner Mitch Swepson have earned selection in the 12 after solid performances for the Queensland Academy of Sport last week in their Toyota 2nd XI competition win over Victoria.
Gannon, who also scored a century for Norths in Premier Cricket last weekend, picked up six wickets for the match against the visitors while Swepson claimed nine for the game.
Batsman Charlie Hemphrey hit 151 for the QAS in their mammoth first innings as he and triple century-maker Bryce Street put on 412 for the third wicket stand.
The Bulls will be captained by Usman Khawaja, who opened his domestic one-day season with back-to-back centuries against Victoria in Melbourne last week.
Bulls batsman Matthew Renshaw continued his bright start to the season with a strong century for Toombul on Saturday in a drawn Premier Cricket clash with Norths.
The former Test opener hit 136 off 173 deliveries in a four-hour knock.
Marsh Sheffield Shield
Queensland Bulls v NSW
Thurs – Sun, the Gabba
10am start daily – admission free
Usman Khawaja (c)
(12th man to be named prior to the toss)
The match will be streamed through cricket.com.au