Fit Clarke returns to Aussie squad for WI series

Updated: 19 November 2009 16:30 IST

Michael Clarke on Thursday returned to Australia's 12-member squad as its vice-captain for the first cricket Test against the West Indies.

Fit Clarke returns to Aussie squad for WI series

Melbourne:

A fit-again Michael Clarke on Thursday returned to Australia's 12-member squad as its vice-captain for the first cricket Test against the West Indies starting November 26 in Brisbane.

Clarke was nursing a back injury which had kept him out of the one-day series against India. Australia, battling through a massive injury crisis, won the seven-match series 4-2 earlier this month.

Except for Doug Bollinger replacing Stuart Clark, Australian selectors have not made any changes to the squad which lost the Ashes to England a few months ago.

Regular wicketkeeper Brad Haddin has recovered from his finger injury that he picked up during the Ashes to make the cut for the series opener against the Caribbeans.

"The squad includes only one change from the side which played the last Test of the Ashes series in England. Doug Bollinger comes in for Stuart Clark," Australia's National Selection Panel (NSP) Chairman Andrew Hilditch said.

"Stuart is extremely unlucky to miss selection but we have been very impressed with Doug's form in the recent ODI series in India and feel he deserves this opportunity in the Australian squad," Hilditch added.

The Ricky Ponting-led outfit would be without pace spearhead Brett Lee in the series as he is nursing an elbow injury.

Hilditch said the side is a mix of youth and experience and should do well in home conditions.

"Losing the Ashes was obviously extremely disappointing but the nucleus of the side performed very well individually. We're confident this young side will continue to develop as we move into this exciting Test series at home but also continue to prepare for an Ashes series, which is now only 12 months away," he said.

Squad: Ricky Ponting (c), Michael Clarke (v-c), Doug Bollinger, Brad Haddin, Nathan Hauritz, Ben Hilfenhaus, Mike Hussey, Mitchell Johnson, Simon Katich, Marcus North, Peter Siddle, Shane Watson.

Topics : Cricket Sreesanth
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