CWC 2023: Marnus Labuschagne picked as Australia name final squad for the World Cup

Travis Head selected despite his unavailability at the start of the tournament.

Marnus Labuschagne picked for World Cup | Getty Images

Australia have on Thursday (September 28) confirmed one change to their ICC Men's Cricket World Cup team, as batter Marnus Labuschagne has replaced the injured spinning all-rounder Ashton Agar in the 15-member squad.

This means Australia will only have Adam Zampa as a specialist spinner, but with batting all-rounders, Glenn Maxwell, Marnus Labuschagne and Steve Smith part of the squad, they still have enough spin bowling options to support the leg-spinner. Head, once he recovers, also bowls decent off-spin.

Australia will effectively have a 14-member squad to pick from in the initial phase of the tournament as Travis Head will need more time to recover after suffering a fracture to his hand in South Africa.

Agar, who suffered a calf injury in South Africa was unfortunate to miss out as Australia couldn't afford to keep two players with ongoing injury issues in their 15-member squad.

"We have made the decision to carry Travis through the early stages with the aim of him being available around the mid-part of the tournament," Bailey said.

"He has been a really important player in this ODI team and we are hopeful his return can provide a positive impetus as it gets to the business end of the tournament."

"This was a tough call but unfortunately, we couldn't carry both Travis and Ashton into the tournament with the injuries they have," 

Labuschagne has been rewarded for scoring 421 runs in the 8 matches he played as a result of injury issues to the likes of Head, Steve Smith, and Glenn Maxwell. His strike-rate was almost 98 in those knocks and that ensured he was first in line, the moment a spot opened up in the squad.

Australia will play hosts India in their opening match of the tournament on October 8 in Chennai. The two sides played in a three-match series which concluded yesterday, and was won by India 2-1.

Australia squad for World Cup: Pat Cummins (c), Sean Abbott, Alex Carey, Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Josh Inglis, Marnus Labuschagne, Mitchell Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Steve Smith, Mitchell Starc, Marcus Stoinis, David Warner, Adam Zampa

(With inputs)


By Saurabh Malhotra - 28 Sep, 2023

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