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Smith back in track, Australia announce squad for fourth Ashes Test

Steve Smith has scored 378 runs at an average of 126 in three innings in the series so far.

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Smith back in track, Australia announce squad for fourth Ashes Test

Former Australia skipper Steven Smith has returned to the side as the country’s selectors announced the squad for the vital Ashes encounter in the fourth Test against England.

Smith missed the third Test at Headingley with concussion after being hit violently by a Jofra Archer delivery.

He has scored 378 runs at an average of 126 in three innings in the series and proved his fitness playing the match against Derbyshire last week.

Marnus Labuschagne who played as first ever concussion substitute in the history of Test cricket keeps his place after three successive half-centuries.

Speed star Mitchell Starc also made his way to the team but top-order batsman Usman Khawaja is dropped. The 32-year old Khawaja failed to perform up to the mark in the series so far leaving the selectors to go for Marcus Harris to open the innings alongside David Warner.

Pace bowler James Pattinson has also been casted out of the squad. For three places in the playing eleven, fast bowlers Pat Cummins, Josh Hazlewood, Mitchell Starc and Peter Siddle will going to compete.

The five-match series is now in level at 1-1 following the home team’s superlative one wicket victory in the third Test at Headingley.

Australia head coach Justin Langer marked out the defeat as a “really tough loss” and said their preparations for the upcoming game had been solid.

“We felt like we got the Ashes stolen the other day. To England’s great credit, that’s what they did — they won that Test match. Now we’ve got to work out what we’re going to do — we’re going to use that as fire, we’re not going to feel sorry for ourselves,” Langer said.

The fourth Test starts on Wednesday.

2019 Qantas Ashes Tour of England

Australia squad: Tim Paine (c), Cameron Bancroft, Pat Cummins, Marcus Harris, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Usman Khawaja, Marnus Labuschagne, Nathan Lyon, Mitchell Marsh, Michael Neser, James Pattinson, Peter Siddle, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Matthew Wade, David Warner.

 

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